Shelley J. Correll, Professor of Sociology, has been appointed as the Barbara D. Finberg Director of the Michelle R. Clayman Institute for Gender Research, Stanford University. Correll brings research expertise, leadership experience, and passion for change to the Institute.
An interdisciplinary search, led by Professor Karen Cook, identified Correll for the position. “The committee was delighted that Shelley Correll was willing to become the next Director of the Clayman Institute,” said Cook, the Ray Lyman Wilbur Professor of Sociology and the Vice Provost for Faculty Development and Diversity. “She brings energy, enthusiasm, and a wealth of knowledge about gender relations in society to her new position.”
"Since gender is a fundamental consideration in most disciplines in the School of Humanities and Sciences, it is essential that we have an ambitious director of the Clayman Institute to draw the strands of research together and promote them," added Richard Saller, Stanford's Dean of the School of Humanities and Sciences. "Professor Correll has the expertise to do just that."
While Correll starts her position as Director this academic year, she is not new to the Clayman Institute. In 2001, while completing her doctoral work in Sociology at Stanford, Correll applied for and received a Graduate Dissertation Fellowship from the Institute. Correll is thrilled to come back to the Institute in a leadership role. “I had a wonderful experience as a graduate dissertation fellow during my last year of graduate school. For the first time, I was in frequent contact with gender scholars from other disciplines,” said Correll. “This experience solidified my commitment to interdisciplinary gender scholarship. I am honored to be leading the Institute that was so important to my development as a gender scholar.”
Prior to returning to Stanford, Correll held faculty positions at the University of Wisconsin and Cornell University. While at Cornell, Correll was Co-Director of the Cornell NSF ADVANCE Center, a center charged with increasing the representation of women on the faculty in science and engineering. Now at Stanford, Correll chairs the Provost’s Panel on Faculty Equity and Quality of Life, a panel that monitors issues that affect faculty. “At Cornell and now at Stanford, I have had many opportunities to apply my research on gender and work to understanding and improving the climate and working conditions of women and men faculty,” explained Correll. “As Clayman Director, I plan to work with the Women’s Faculty Forum, the Women’s Opportunity Center, and other groups on campus to make gender research visible and to apply this research to our local environment.”
“It is impossible to imagine a better choice to head an institute for research on women and gender than Shelley Correll,” said Deborah Rhode, E.W. McFarland Professor of Law and former Director of the Clayman Institute. “She brings to the position exceptional expertise, insight, commitment, and leadership skills. Stanford is incredibly fortunate that she was willing to take on this responsibility and the field will be immeasurably improved as a consequence.”
As Director, Correll plans to address the question: Can we move beyond the stalled gender revolution? Twenty years ago, Arlie Hochschild described the gender revolution as stalled, noting that while women had flooded into the paid labor market, men had not increased their involvement in the household, thereby limiting the potential of women in the workplace. More recently, scholars have identified further evidence of a stall in the movement towards gender equality. Whether we look at metrics in the workplace such as the gender gap in wages, or the participation of women male dominated fields, the paid labor market, and state-level politics, measures of equality have remained relatively constant since the mid 1990s.
Through a series of workshops, conferences, and fellowships, Correll will bring together an intellectually diverse group of scholars to provide new insights into the barriers to women's advancement and to propose novel and workable solutions to advancing gender equality. “As one of the oldest and most prestigious gender research institutes in the country, the Clayman Institute is poised to set the agenda, to identify the next big questions that need to be answered in order for gender equality to become a reality,” noted Correll.
Correll’s own research focuses on what she calls the “micro-foundations of gender inequality,” identifying how social psychological processes reproduce structures of gender inequality. In particular, she studies how differing expectations shape the everyday experiences of women and men in work and school environments.
Stanford sociology professor and nationally recognized gender expert, Paula England, describes Correll as “the new national star among sociologists who do gender, with rigorous and innovative research.” England added, “Shelley Correll also works energetically to translate the research of gender scholars into understandable terms to inform the public and public policy. We are so lucky to have her directing the Clayman Institute!”
Correll has authored a series of papers on how stereotypes about mathematics affect women’s decisions to enter technical fields. More recently, she has studied how stereotypes about working mothers affect their experiences in the workplace. This research resulted in several papers, including the award winning article, “Getting a job: Is there a motherhood penalty?" She has also edited books on the social psychology of gender and is currently writing a book on social science research methods.
Hastings Law Professor and award-winning author Joan Williams believes Correll is the “perfect choice” as Director of the Clayman Institute. “A prominent scholar, who has done pathbreaking research on gender, Correll also knows how to create communities and to effectively disseminate scholarly findings.”