Swedish technical university cancels positions if male applicant found most competent

Nov 8, 2019

As a male candidate you are welcome to apply for a position as Assistant Professor at the Faculty of Engineering at Lund University. However, internal documents tell another story: the faculty only provides the necessary funding for the position if a woman is to receive it. If a male applicant is about to get the position, the appointment is canceled. Then the department can make a new attempt to get a woman by advertising a new position, and so on. 

If the recruitment process result is that an Assistant Professor of underrepresented gender cannot be hired, LTH funds will not be used. The department can then choose to go ahead with the proposed applicant and fund it with their own resources or interrupt the recruitment process. If a recruitment process is interrupted, another Assistant Professorship may be advertised, such as the one that came in 5th place when allocating funds, or alternatively five jobs may be announced the following year.

According to current governmental statistics, the proportion of female beginners in electronics, computer technology and automation is 15%, which reflects the proportion of female professors in those fields.

At Sweden’s largest departments in gender studies, the female students represent an overwhelming majority, and there is only one male professor—in all the departments combined.

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