Not Simply ‘Counting Heads’: A Gender Diversity Index for the Team Level

Anne Laure Humbert, Elisabeth Anna Günther, Jörg Müller

Publications: Contribution to journalArticlePeer Reviewed


This article proposes a new composite measure of gender diversity for research teams that goes beyond simply 'counting heads'. This measure adopts a more elaborated understanding of gender diversity than merely relying on the proportion of women and men, by taking into account the outcomes of gendered processes along seven grounds of diversity (age, care responsibilities, marital status, education, tenure, seniority, contractual position). Rather than focus on the individuals or the organisations, this measure is computed at the level of teams. This is because teams constitute a unit of analysis highly relevant to the context of higher education research but are often neglected. Illustrations of the results for STEM research teams are provided to show the potential uses of the Gender Diversity Index as a diagnostic tool (e.g. in certification schemes such as Athena SWAN in the UK and elsewhere), or to measure and report on the progress of gender change within higher education institutions.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)689–707
Number of pages19
JournalSocial Indicators Research
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Sep 2021

Austrian Fields of Science 2012

  • 504014 Gender studies
  • 502026 Human resource management
  • 101018 Statistics


  • Composite indicator
  • Diversity
  • Equality
  • Gender
  • STEM
  • Teams

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