I agree with the comment made in regards to this post re: how frustrating it is that this is still seen as a “woman’s issue.”

Feminist Philosophers

“Career progress relative to opportunity: how many papers is a baby ‘worth’?”

Natascha Klocker, University of Wollongong
Danielle Drozdzewski, University of New South Wales

How many papers is a baby ‘worth’? We were prompted to ask this provocative question by recent experiences, working on appointment committees and writing research grants in Australia, where provisions to quantify research track-records ‘relative to opportunity’ call
for applicants to explain how fluctuations in their publication outputs have been impacted by ‘career interruptions’ such as childbearing. In this age of the increasingly neoliberal university—where every activity, output, and impact is audited (Castree, 2000; 2006)—our commentary seeks to question how decision makers account (or not) for the career impacts
of having children.

Our interest in this issue is both personal and political. We are both female early-career researchers and each of us had our first (and currently, only) child within one year of attaining
our doctorates…

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