Third-level leaders and the gender lens


Sir, – In your CAO supplement (August 21st) you talk to six university presidents – six male university presidents.

In hope, I checked the three remaining universities not featured (NUIG, UCC and UCD), only to find three more male presidents.

This confirms the gender inequality issue in Irish third-level institutions where women are hugely under-represented in leadership (as well as governance, management and senior academic roles).

It’s time for systemic changes to redress this balance – women make up 50 per cent of lecturing staff in third level yet only 21 per cent of professors are women. Even with targets set by the Higher Education Authority (HEA) following the National Review of Gender Equality in Higher Institutions (2016), progress is slow. Hopefully the measure to link State and research funding to addressing gender inequality will get better results.

Finally I suggest The Irish Times could use a better gender lens when reporting. Out of the 14 institutes of technology, there are three female presidents, and the female view on the college experience would be welcome and provide more balance. – Yours, etc,


Ringsend, Dublin 4.