Primum Non Discernere: Glass Ceilings and Female Representation at the European Association of Urology and European Society for Paediatric Urology Annual Meetings, 2012–2022

Bañuelos Marco B., 't Hoen L., O'Kelly F., DÖNMEZ M. İ., Haid B., BAYDİLLİ N., ...More

European Urology Open Science, vol.52, pp.60-65, 2023 (SCI-Expanded) identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Abstract
  • Volume: 52
  • Publication Date: 2023
  • Doi Number: 10.1016/j.euros.2023.04.010
  • Journal Name: European Urology Open Science
  • Journal Indexes: Science Citation Index Expanded (SCI-EXPANDED), Scopus, BIOSIS, EMBASE, Directory of Open Access Journals
  • Page Numbers: pp.60-65
  • Keywords: Female representation, Gender bias, Glass ceiling, Paediatric urology, Sexism, Urology congresses, Urology meetings
  • Istanbul University Affiliated: Yes


Background: The term glass ceiling coined by Loden in 1978 is commonly used to describe difficulties faced by minorities and women when trying to move into senior roles. Objective: To analyse trends and patterns for female representation at the European Association of Urology (EAU) and European Society for Paediatric Urology (ESPU) annual general meetings over the past decade. Design, setting, and participants: We used objective data on female representation in the roles of chairs, moderators, and lecture speakers at the EAU and ESPU meetings from 2012 to 2022. Outcome measurements and statistical analysis: We evaluated gender based representation in paediatric urology sessions at the EAU and ESPU meetings, collecting data on the overall number of sessions, lectures, symposiums, abstract/poster sessions, and courses, and analysed the male/female ratio. Data were derived from printed and digital programmes for the relevant meetings. Results and limitations: During the period from 2012 to 2022, the percentage female representation varied from 0% (2012) to a maximum of 35% (2022) at EUA paediatric urology sessions, and from 13.5% (2014) to a maximum of 32% (2022) at ESPU meetings. Both associations show clear progression towards equality. Conclusions: Female representation at EAU and ESPU meetings has risen over the years, reaching 35% and 32%, respectively, in 2022, which is in line with the number of female members. We hope that this motivates a move towards the equality objectives for 2030. A clear and fundamental societal change is needed, with fair and more consistent institutional policies and framework commitments in the areas of science, medicine, and global health. Gender equality and diversity taskforces are essential to achieve these goals. Patient summary: We analysed the male/female ratio for participants in annual meetings held by the European Association of Urology and the European Society for Paediatric Urology. From a low level in 2012, the ratio increased to over 30% in 2022, in line with the female membership of the societies. Focus on fair and consistent policies is needed to ensure that women are well represented in medicine.