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A qualitative review focusing on gender inequalities in clinical academic careers

LEAD RESEARCHERS

Dr Jess Morgan

Clinical Lecturer

Paul Crampton

Dr Paul Crampton

Senior Lecturer

Amelia Kehoe

Dr Amelia Kehoe

Lecturer in Medical Education

Professor Paul Tiffin

Professor of Health Services and Workforce Research, Honorary Consultant in the Psychiatry of Adolescence

TIME FRAME

Completed

Why this research is needed

The advancement of excellent healthcare requires developing and retaining a diverse community of research-focused healthcare professionals.

However, inequalities in clinical academia exist. It is not completely understood why these inequalities occur, or what interventions exist to facilitate equality.

This study aims to identify the barriers and facilitators to equality in clinical academic careers and the interventions to address these, with a focus on gender inequality.

This research is funded by HEE, NIHR, The Academy of Medical Sciences, Cancer Research, Medical Research Council, UK Research and Innovation, and Wellcome.

Dr Jess Morgan from Hull York Medical School and Professor Gabrielle Finn from the University of Manchester at PIs. Co-Is are: Paul Crampton, Millie Kehoe, Paul Tiffin, Jennifer Brown, Lesley Stewart, John Buchanan, Abisola Balogun-Katung 

What we did

This multi-phasic study sought to explore barriers and facilitators to clinical academic careers, with a focus on inequalities based upon gender and ethnicity. The researchers conducted a systematic review and a qualitative exploration, including interviews and audio diaries. An intervention plan was created to enable clinical trusts, research funders and academic institutions to address inequalities and promote the recruitment and retention of clinical academics. 

Outputs

Raine, G., Evans, C., Uphoff, E. P., Brown, J. V. E., Crampton, P. E., Kehoe, A., ... & Morgan, J. E. (2022). Strengthening the clinical academic pathway: a systematic review of interventions to support clinical academic careers for doctors and dentists. BMJ open, 12(9), e060281.

Brown, J. V., Crampton, P. E., Finn, G. M., Morgan, J. E., & Project Team. (2020). From the sticky floor to the glass ceiling and everything in between: protocol for a systematic review of barriers and facilitators to clinical academic careers and interventions to address these, with a focus on gender inequality. Systematic reviews, 9, 1-7.

Finn, G. M., Crampton, P., Buchanan, J. A., Balogun, A. O., Tiffin, P. A., Morgan, J. E., ... & Kehoe, A. (2022). The impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on the research activity and working experience of clinical academics, with a focus on gender and ethnicity: a qualitative study in the UK. BMJ open, 12(6), e057655.

Kehoe, A., Crampton, P., Buchanan, J., Tiffin, P., Balogun-Katung, A., Morgan, J., & Finn, G. (2022). Tips to support the recruitment, retention, and progression of clinical academics. Medical Science Educator, 32(2), 503-509.

Two reports have been produced:

  • Finn GM, Morgan J et al (2020). From the sticky floor to the glass ceiling and everything in between: A systematic review and qualitative study focusing on gender inequalities in Clinical Academic careers. Final report. Commissioned by: NIHR Academy, Academy of Medical Sciences, Cancer Research UK, Health Education England, Medical Research Council, and Wellcome Trust. Download the full report (DOI: 10.13140/RG.2.2.35907.32809)
  • Finn GM, Morgan J et al (2021). Inequalities in UK clinical academic careers: a systematic review and qualitative study. Short report. Commissioned by: NIHR Academy, Academy of Medical Sciences, Cancer Research UK, Health Education England, Medical Research Council, and Wellcome Trust. Download the short report (DOI: 10.13140/RG.2.2.14667.92966)

A summmary video of the main results is also available on YouTube.

The project has already had a number of positive outputs, including conference presentations, available via YouTube.

The project has also made impact, for example the changes in Athena SWAN restrictions placed upon funding applications and a cross-funder letter to universities asking them to consider how they create supportive research culture.

Project updates are accessible via the project Twitter account @GenderClinical

Professor Gabrielle Finn and the Health Professions Education team led the qualitative studies and the development of the intervention plan. Dr Jess Morgan and the Centre for Reviews and Dissemination led the Systematic Review, the protocol for which can be accessed on the BMC website.

Contact us

We welcome enquiries about policy and guidance, collaborations, our research, tutor training, or opportunities to visit or study with us in the Health Professions Education Unit.