Men Receive Triple Amount of Cancer Research Funding Interview with:
“Faecal Coliforms analysis” by SuSanA Secretariat is licensed under CC BY 2.0Dr. Mahiben Maruthappu

Public Health Registrar What is the background for this study? What are the main findings?

Response: Gender disparities in the fields of science and technology have been documented, and  it becomes increasingly apparent at higher levels of seniority. In this analysis, we found a quantifiable difference in cancer research funding awarded to female principle investigators compared to male principle investigators (PIs).

Across all cancer research funding grants that we identified, male PIs received 3.6 times the total investment value, and 1.6 times the average award value compared with their female counterparts. What should readers take away from your report?

 Response: It’s clear there is a gender funding gap in cancer research, with men receiving triple the amount of funding as women. For every pound (£) of research funding a woman receives, a man receives almost 40 pence more. It’s critical that these inequalities are addressed – more must be done and equal opportunities must be prioritised. What recommendations do you have for future research as a result of this work?

Response: We recommend investigating gender imbalances across various fields (such as other research types) and looking at how trends have changed over time. In addition to this, it would be helpful to  analyse the contribution of different factors that might be causing these gender imbalances. It would also be very valuable to identify effective interventions that might address any disparities in opportunities or support offered to women in science and technology. 


A systematic analysis of UK cancer research funding by gender of primary investigator

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