Statistics show that there were 31 women in jobs with salaries higher than £100,000 at the University in 2018/19 compared to 132 men, with a gender pay gap of 18.9% across the entire University.
In a Freedom of Information request, The Gryphon can reveal that there have been consistently higher numbers of men in jobs with salaries higher than £100,000 than women over the last four years. The highest proportion of women in jobs that were in this category ever was 26.3% in 2017/18.
The number of women in top jobs in 2015-16 was twenty-two with an increase of seven in 2016-17. Since then, the number has only increased by 2. The number of men by comparison in 2015-16 was 116, increasing to 126 in 2016. There was then a decrease of 16 the following year followed by an increase of 22 last year.
The percentage of female staff at the University in July 2019 stood at 54%, a decrease of 1% since 2017.
The statistics also revealed the number of BAME employees on salaries higher than £100,000 has not increased more than 7 in any year with the number dropping below 5 in 2017-18. This meant there were 7 BAME employees earning more than £100,000 compared to 117. This meant they only made up 4% of staff in this grouping. By comparison, the percentage of BAME staff across the entire University is nearly three times as high at 11% with the wider BAME population in Leeds standing at 15%.
However, it must be noted that at least more than 20% of employees in the last three years have not declared their ethnicity and this absence in the data could affect the figures we see above.
The Gryphon previously reported a pay gap of 39% for Black employees at the University of Leeds compared to White employees.
The Gryphon was not able to reveal the figures for BAME men and women individually with salaries higher than £100,000 because the numbers of staff were less than or equal to five. These numbers would be low enough that staff might be able to be identified from the statistics.
The news comes after the University of Leeds has just appointed a woman as Vice-Chancellor, Simone Buitendjk. Less than 15% of Vice-Chancellors in the UK are women according to research by Lancaster University. Women make up 51% of the general population.
A University of Leeds spokesperson said:
“Gender imbalance across roles is a contributing factor in our gender pay gap and we know that there is more to do to achieve the right balance. This is an issue across the sector.
“Through a strategic focus on recruitment, reward, and people development practices we have seen a reduction in the pay gap since 2017, and each year we’re learning more about the causes, introducing further programs of work and embedding long-term sustainable practices to create a fairer and more inclusive workplace.”
Looking across the University as a whole, data published by the Equality Policy Unit shows a gender pay gap of 18.9%. This is an improvement compared to 2017 when The Gryphon reported there was a gap fo 22.5%. However, the figures are significantly higher than the Higher Education average of 12% according to trade union UCU.
UCU argue that a gap of 20.1%, the mean in 2018, is equivalent to women working at the University of Leeds working the first academic term for free.
According to the Equality Policy Union, there has been a slight improvement with women in the upper quartile of pay increasing by 1.9%. However they still only make up 41.9% of this group.
The Gryphon does not currently have equal pay data – comparing the salaries of men and women in the same position – but the pay gap will partially be down to the lack of women earning higher salaries.
According to data published by the government in March 2019 about the University of Leeds, women earn 88p for every £1 that a man earns with a median hourly wage that is 12.5% lower than men’s.
On bonus pay gaps, the Equality Policy Unit data states that there is a mean bonus pay gap of 12.2% in 2019. However, according to the government’s data for the same year, women earn 50p for every £1 than men with a mean bonus pay that is 82.1% lower.
Gender pay gaps and a lack of women in top positions seem to be an issue across the Higher Education sector as a whole. 0.2% of all female academic staff employed in Higher Education bodies are in manager, director or senior official positions. However, they do make up 42% of those who hold positions in this category and make up 46% of total academic staff employed across the Higher Education sector.
In non-academic roles interestingly, women outnumbered men in most categories including senior managerial and directorial roles.
Women are poorly represented in top-level positions across the UK and not just in Higher Education. Four-fifths of those on £119,000 or more are men in the UK. Those with a salary of £119,000 are in the top 1% of earners in the UK.
If you are interested in more information on the gender pay gap at the University of Leeds, click here.
Image Credit: Ed Barnes