Facts Sheet

Facts and Figures for Women in STEM

Below is a list of facts and figures regarding the state of women in the STEM field. They certainly don’t tell the whole story, but are a good resource for use in presentations, articles, reports, etc.

Links and data is updated in an ongoing manner and all data is linked to its original sources.

STEM and Women in Academia

In 2019–2020, women of color earned a small percentage (15.1%) of bachelor’s degrees across all STEM fields in the U.S. including: Asian women  (5.5%) Black women (3.0%) Latinas (4.8%) and American Indian/Alaska Native women: 0.1%.
(National Center for Education Statistics, Digest of Education Statistics: 2021 Tables and Figures, 2022)

Since 2015, the number of women in STEM (women graduating in core STEM subjects) has grown from 22,020 to 24,705 in 2019. However, the percentage of women in STEM has fluctuated from 25%, down to 24%, and finally up to 26% where it has stalled in 2019.(U.K)
(Women in STEM Statistics, 7/22/22)

Nearly as many Ph.D. scientists in the United States now work in the private sector (42%) as in academic institutions (43%)
(Katie Langin, Science Magazine, March 2019)

Female STEM Startups

Only 15% of venture capital partners in 2021 were women.

(Joyti Mann, Business Insider, 4/23/22)

For women with STEM (science, technology, engineering, and math) startups, grant dollars from the federal government could be an additional capital source. While the dollars available are lower ($3.6 billion in 2018) than venture capital ($135.8 billion in 2019), your chances of getting funding are nearly five times higher.

(NWBC.org, America’s Seed Fund, 9/20/20)

Female founders don't get their fair share of venture capital. Startups with all female founders received 2.6% of Venture Capital in 2019 and even less (1.8%) in he first 3 quarters of 2020.

(NVCA Venture Monitor, Q3 2020 Pitch Book, via Forbes 10/12/20)

Funding for US femtech startups doubled in 2021 to $1.4bn in 2021.

(Joyti Mann, Business Insider, 4/23/22)

Women Working in STEM

When compared to other industries (including non-STEM), the representation of women among board directors in the information technology industry remains low but continues to increase, reaching 28% in 2021, up from 21% in 2020.

(C. Milhomem, MSCI, Women on Boards, Progress Report,  2021)

Nearly a third of the female respondents who work outside academe report experiencing discrimination in promotion, compensation, and professional development opportunities. Women with dependents report more discrimination than those without.

(American Economic Association, Climate Survey 3/18/2019)

Leadership at the Federally-Funded National Laboratories and R&D centers is largely directed by white men, who hold 86% of the top-level director positions.
(AWIS, Leadership Report, 2019)

Nearly 80% of the health care workforce are women, but only about 21% of health executives and board members are women, and only about a third of doctors. And, women are more highly represented in lower-paying fields, such as home health workers, nurses and the lower-paying specialties such as pediatricians.

(Pew Research, Women’s representation in STEM jobs varies by education, 1/8/2018)

The gender gap in pay has remained relatively stable in the United States over the past 15 years or so. In 2020, women earned 84% of what men earned, and it would take an extra 42 days of work for women to earn what men did in 2020.
(Amanda Barrasso and Anna Brown, Pew Research Center Report, 5/25/21)

2.5 million women have lost their jobs or dropped out of the workforce because of the pandemic. Five million women were business owners in February 2020; one in four of these women had to close their doors by April 2020.
(VP.Kamala Harris, Washington Post Op-ed, 2/12/21)

Roughly 4 percent of STEM company leadership roles are held by women of color and 22 percent by white women. Women of color occupy 3 percent of lab leadership roles, while white women and men of color hold 24 percent and 9 percent respectively.

(AWIS, Leadership Report, 2019)

Women make up nearly 45% of all BioTech employees, but only 30% of executive teams and an abysmal 18% on biotech company boards. These numbers drop even further when looking at people of color: 15% and 14% respectively.
(Amirah Al idrus, Fierce Biotech, 1/31/2020)