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The Gender Gap in Medical Specialties

In an article in the “Journal of Business Diversity,” WilmU D.B.A. alumni Drs. Jay Pickern and Helena Costakis found that stigma associated with women medical students discourages them from going into male-dominated specialties, even though female medical students typically get higher grades than their male classmates. “Medical specialties are missing out on talent,” they write.

Their research, Enacted Stigmatization and  Stigma Consciousness of Female Physicians: Exploring the Potential Impact on Choice of Medical Specialty, found that women are more likely to practice in pediatrics, OB/GYN, allergies and family medicine, while men specialized in orthopedic surgery, neurosurgery, thoracic surgery and interventional radiology.

“This is a critical concern for healthcare management and administration as enacted stigmatization and stigma consciousness have adverse work outcomes… as well as human resources factors like recruiting and talent management, employee relations (such as wellbeing and psychological safety) and employee job performance,” they write.

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