Some things are worth fighting for.
My accountant friend and I organized ASU’s 2010-2011 faculty pay data by professorship and gender and found a significant gender pay gap. The average female professor — including associate, assistant, regents, clinical and full — makes $84,619. The average male professor makes $96,565. The difference is $11,946. Female professors make, on average, 87 percent of what men do at ASU.
That difference is too much.
The School of Design has an average salary of $65,950. Female professors make $62,419 while men make $67,234. The music department has a similar gap. The average salary is $70,621. Women earn $65,148. Men earn $74,023. The Hugh Downs School of Human Communication has an average salary of $84,887, with women making $82,158 and men making $87,196.
That trend continues from department to department. The dance department has an average salary of $56,160. Women earn, on average, $53,993, whereas men earn $61,217. It’s the same story in the English department, except the salaries are higher. The average professor salary is $86,859, with women making $81,707 and men making $91,443 — a $10,000 difference.
The School of Earth and Space Exploration has among the greatest gender pay inequality. The department has just one female professor for every seven men and an average department salary of $98,369. Women in the department earn $60,870, whereas men earn $103,727.
Some departments break the trend. The theater department has an average salary of $68,936 and an uncommonly fair professor ratio of 14 women to 13 men. Women in the department earn $69,422 while men earn $68,414. The finance department, meanwhile, has an average salary of $128,352, with women making $157,641 and men making $122,860. Yet the department has just three female professors to 16 men.
The psychology department follows a similar pattern. The average salary is $105,980, with female professors making $111,884 and men earning $102,742. Women in the department earn significantly more, then. But the department has 45 percent more men than women.
The department of management, however, mimics ASU’s overall trend. Women earn $133,094. Men earn $152,097 — a $19,000 pay gap.
ASU’s gender pay inequality plays into a larger theme. In 2010, women in the U.S. earned 80 percent of what men did, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. But as Time reports, two Cornell economists claim the national pay gap is distorted because it doesn’t account for education and life choices, and when those factors are included, men make just 9 percent more than women.
Most factors are controlled here because professors have the same level of education and career choices. Further including ranks, though, shows female assistant professors across all disciplines make $72,920 while men earn $72,288. Female associate professors make $77,500. The men earn $83,508. Female full professors make $102,800 while the men earn $113,408 — a $10,600 difference.
No matter the explanations, female professors at ASU make significantly less than men. Inequitable salaries are unjust and create a gendered class distinction.
Gender equality is always worth fighting for.
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