Dutch universities ordered to hire 100 female professors this year

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Jet Bussemaker (Photo: Rijksoverheid.nl/Wikimedia Commons). Jet Bussemaker (Photo: Rijksoverheid.nl/Wikimedia Commons)

By the end fo this year, Dutch universities must employ 100 more female professors than they do now, Minister Jet Bussemaker of Education, Culture and Sciende orered. She is making 5 million euros available over the next 5 years to attract suitable female candidates, the Volkskrant reports.

This is on top of previous agreements on appointing 200 female professors  by 2020. "In the Netherlands it's simply not going fast enough", Bussemaker said. She explained her policy on the field of scientific talent in a letter sent to parliament on Wednesday. 

Currently only 750 of the 4,500 professors at Dutch universities are female. Internationally, the Netherlands is brining up the rear end with. If the universities give heed to Bussemaker's instruction, by the end of the year each faculty will get an average of one extra female professor. 

According to Bussemaker, a lack of talent is not the reason behind the few female professors in the country. ""More than half of the students are women. There is enough supply, but they do not go through." The Minister believes that Dutch universities in general let too much talent slip through their fingers unused. This applies to female students and PhD students who don't go any further, but also to young researchers in general - most of whom only get short term contracts. "The age structure in universities is unbalanced", Bussemaker said. 

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