From Diversifying Economic Quality: A Wiki for Instructors and Departments
Since 2005, the percentage of women awarded PhD’s in economics has hovered around 32 percent demonstrating that between undergraduate economic programs, and graduate economic programs the economics pipeline isn’t necessarily “leaky.” Although this information demonstrates that the percentage of women gaining doctorate degrees in economics will only increase once there is a higher focus in retaining women at the undergraduate level.
Unfortunately, there is very little recent data available concerning the percentage of PhD’s in economics awarded to underrepresented minorities. The data provided by the Committee on the Status of Minority Groups in the Economics Profession states that between 1993-2004, of all economics doctorates awarded to U.S citizens, an average of 3.8% were awarded to African Americans, 3.6% to Hispanics, and 0.1% to Native Americans.
In 2009, the doctorate degrees awarded to underrepresented minorities in Economics, the Social Sciences, and the STEM fields varied significantly. Once again, significant differences in participation are especially evident for Black students. Black students were awarded 2.0% of the doctorate degrees in Economics, where areas in the Social Sciences Black students were awarded 6.8% of the doctorate degrees and in the STEM fields, 4.8% of the doctorate degrees. The percentage of Hispanic students earning doctorate degrees in Economics (4.4%)is fairly close to the percentage of Hispanic students earning doctorate degrees in STEM fields (4.3%) as well as in the Social Sciences (5.2%). Similarly, American Indian/Alaska Native students are represented at the doctorate level in Economics (0.4%), the Social Sciences (1.0%), and the STEM Fields (0.5%) at comparable participation rates.
Source: U.S. Department of Education, National Center for Education Statistics (NCES); Integrated Postsecondary Education Data System(IPEDS) Completions, 1995-2009 (Washington , D.C.: NCES, 2011). Created by data provided by WebCaspar.
Similar to the undergraduate level, when compared to participation rates in the STEM fields and in the Social Sciences, women are significantly underrepresented at the doctorate level in Economics. In Economics, women earned 38.2% of the doctorate degrees in Economics, where areas in the Social Sciences, women actually earned 50.5% of the doctorate degrees, and in the STEM fields women were awarded 54.1% of the doctorate degrees.