COSWA Mission Statement

Preamble: COSWA was created 25 years ago to monitor gender discrimination within our discipline. Since that time it has produced surveys, introduced resolutions at AAA business meetings, set up a system for censuring departments that failed to make good-faith efforts to hire in gender-neutral ways, and kept the discipline informed about progress in gender parity within academic employment. As a recent AAA survey indicated, employment of women at the level of assistant professor is now approximately equal to that of men, and proportional to the representation of each in the available PhD pool. At the same time, however, surveys show that gender parity has not yet been attained. Discrepancies still exist in such variables as rank, length of time in rank (i.e., speed of promotion), citation patterns and stand measures of "productivity" (e.g., publication rates). These indicators of ongoing gender bias, together with changes in the pattern of anthropological employment toward more professional and part-time careers, have led the Committee's members to modify COSWA's mission.

The Committee will pursue greater parity for women in the discipline by means of three activities: (1) monitoring, (2)advocating, and (3) educating.

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