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Alexander-Stamatios Antoniou and Marioleni Apergi

This chapter highlights the problems faced by women in the leadership of higher education. Although in most countries in the world, and in particular in the West, the legal and institutional framework recognizes gender equality, including labor and opportunities within the working environment, it is being circumvented in favor of the male sex and to the detriment of women, and stereotyped conceptions of gender roles are a powerful building block of culture that overrides the legal-institutional framework. Women are disproportionately represented among senior executives in the administration of universities, they learn to advance more slowly and they are controlled by variables such as age, discipline, class, and institution. Also, with regard to academic careers, there are differences between men and women; for example, women devote more time to teaching and advice than men do. Education in general is a traditional female profession in Europe and in the Western world. However, the percentage of women who follow or hold leading positions is extremely low. From the international literature it is shown that at university institutes, women scientists face “a glass roof and an inaccessible path.” Finally, this study refers to global studies that point to the strong presence of women in university institutions but their downward course as they go up the scale of the hierarchy.