In 2006, the pre-publication of the National Academies report, Beyond Bias and Barriers: Fulfilling the Potential of Women in Academic Science and Engineeringfound women in the biomedical sciences face institutional and environmental barriers to advancement at all career stages. The report called for broad, innovative action from universities, professional societies, and government funding agencies. 

As a response to the report, then-NIH Director Elias A. Zerhouni, M.D., established the NIH Working Group on Women in Biomedical Careers in January 2007. He and others at NIH recognized that as one of the leaders in the biomedical community, NIH has an important role to play in removing barriers to success. Dr. Zerhouni and Dr. Vivian W. Pinn, then-Associate Director for Research on Women’s Health and Director of the Office of Research on Women’s Health, served as the group’s first co-chairs. Initial efforts included national workshops on mentoring and the 2008 publication of Best Practices for Sustaining Career Success.

Accomplishments of the Research Partnership on Women in Biomedical Careers

In 2008, the NIH Working Group on Women in Biomedical Careers issued a trans-NIH request for applications (RFA-GM-09-012) titled “Research on Causal Factors and Interventions that Promote ad Support the Careers of Women in Biomedical and Behavioral Science and Engineering.” After the 4-year grants resulting from the RFA were completed, the grants’ principal investigators formed the Research Partnership on Women in Science Careers.  A summary report of the Research Partnership, which resulted in over 100 publications, can be found HERE.

Learn more about the research and recommendations that stem from this initiative below:

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