Although 47% of staff at universities in Scotland is female, only 21% have been promoted to professorships, figures compiled by The Herald reveal. The situation has remained static since 2007, when legislation was introduced to improve gender equality.
Heriot-Watt University has the lowest proportion of female professors – just 12% of promoted staff members are women – followed by Abertay in Dundee (13%). Glasgow Caledonian University has the highest, at 31%. There are just five female principals out of a total of 19 Scottish higher education institutions (26%) although that compares favourably with England, where just 12% of principals are female.
Mary Senior, Scottish official of the University and College Union, described the figures as "deeply disappointing" and called for action.