How to improve enrollment of women in engineering: Lessons learnt from the developing world

Beena Sukumaran, Harriet Hartman, Dona Johnson

Research output: Contribution to journalConference articlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations


Previous research on international variation in women's participation in undergraduate engineering education suggests that there are several necessary preconditions that must be met in order for there to be relatively high enrollment and subsequent employment of women in the field. In addition, there are facilitating conditions, which support women's participation in engineering venues. This research focuses on engineering enrollment in Kerala in India. Kerala has seen higher enrollment of women in engineering for a decade or more. This study examines the cultural, political and social aspects that have made engineering enrollment in Kerala reach levels that are rarely seen in the United States or the Western world, and assesses how the social, cultural and political aspects of the region can create the preconditions and facilitating conditions necessary for higher enrollment of women in engineering. The study will also focus on lessons learnt from this region of the world, which can be adopted in other countries to improve the enrollment of women in engineering. The paper also describes a study which is currently underway among female engineering graduates in Kerala which will contribute to understanding the role of cultural, social and political factors in the high enrollment of women among Kerala's engineering students.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)6577-6584
Number of pages8
JournalASEE Annual Conference Proceedings
StatePublished - 2004
EventASEE 2004 Annual Conference and Exposition, "Engineering Researchs New Heights" - Salt Lake City, UT, United States
Duration: Jun 20 2004Jun 23 2004

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Engineering(all)


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