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Acad Med. 2015 Aug;90(8):1077-83. doi: 10.1097/ACM.0000000000000717.

Considering context in academic medicine: differences in demographic and professional characteristics and in research productivity and advancement metrics across seven clinical departments.

Author information

1
E.T. Warner is research associate, Department of Epidemiology, Harvard School of Public Health, and instructor in medicine, Department of Medicine, Harvard Medical School, Boston, Massachusetts. R. Carapinha is research and program manager, Office for Diversity Inclusion and Community Partnership, and postdoctoral fellow, Department of Global Health and Social Medicine, Harvard Medical School, Boston, Massachusetts. G.M. Weber is assistant professor of medicine, Harvard Medical School, and director, Biomedical Research Informatics Core, Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, Boston, Massachusetts. E.V. Hill is director of research and evaluation, Office for Diversity Inclusion and Community Partnership, Harvard Medical School, Boston, Massachusetts. J.Y. Reede is dean, Office for Diversity Inclusion and Community Partnership, and associate professor of medicine, Harvard Medical School, and associate professor, Department of Social and Behavioral Sciences, Harvard School of Public Health, Boston, Massachusetts.

Abstract

PURPOSE:

To understand the disciplinary contexts in which faculty work, the authors examined demographics, professional characteristics, research productivity, and advancement across seven clinical departments at Harvard Medical School (HMS) and nationally.

METHOD:

HMS analyses included faculty from seven clinical departments-anesthesiology, medicine, neurology, pediatrics, psychiatry, radiology, and surgery-in May 2011 (N = 7,304). National analyses included faculty at 141 U.S. medical schools in the same seven departments as of December 31, 2011 (N = 91,414). The authors used chi-square and Wilcoxon Mann-Whitney tests to compare departmental characteristics.

RESULTS:

Heterogeneity in demographics, professional characteristics, and advancement across departments was observed in HMS and national data. At HMS, psychiatry had the highest percentage of underrepresented minority faculty at 6.6% (75/1,139). In anesthesiology, 24.2% (128/530) of faculty were Asian, whereas in psychiatry only 7.9% (90/1,139) were (P < .0001). Female faculty were the majority in pediatrics and psychiatry, whereas in surgery 26.3% (172/654) of the faculty were female (P < .0001). At HMS, surgery, radiology, and neurology had the shortest median times to promotion and the highest median number of publications, H-index, and second-degree centrality. Neurology also had the highest percentage of faculty who had been principal investigators on a National Institutes of Health-funded grant.

CONCLUSIONS:

There were differences in demographics, professional characteristics, and advancement across clinical departments at HMS and nationally. The context in which faculty work, of which department is a proxy, should be accounted for in research on faculty career outcomes and diversity inclusion in academic medicine.

PMID:
25853687
DOI:
10.1097/ACM.0000000000000717
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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