Dr. Ayesha Masood's Profile

Ayesha Masood is a doctoral candidate in Sociocultural Anthropology at Arizona State University Pakistan. She is currently conducting dissertation fieldwork in Pakistan. Her research, which investigates the underrepresentation of women in STEMM fields in the context of Pakistani society through an ethnography of women doctors of Pakistan, is funded by Wenner-Gren Foundation, American Institute of Pakistan Studies and Arizona State University. Her research interests include feminism, social equity, spatial justice and gendered work. Her previous education includes a Master’s degree in Political Science from the University of the Punjab and an MBBS from King Edward Medical College.


Under-representation of Women in Science, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics and Medicine (STEMM) Education

Under-representation of women in science, technology, engineering, mathematics and medicine (STEMM) education and careers is a world-wide issue. Despite multiple policy interventions, barriers to women’s success and participation in STEMM careers remains and parity in their participation and status has not been achieved. Women in Pakistan face similar circumstances in almost all STEM fields except medicine where, paradoxically, women medical graduates overwhelmingly outnumber men. Yet, this increase in number of graduates does not translate into women actually practicing medicine. My project investigates how multiple social factors related to women’s work, gender and sexuality in Pakistani society constrain, enable or affect the career choices of Pakistani women doctors. Focusing on the lived experiences, thoughts and practices of the women doctors themselves, as well as the cultural and social formations in Pakistani society which shape them, my project contributes to the research on women in science, which usually does not focus on social factors behind education and empowerment and is mostly based on studies in western, industrialized societies. My hope is to generate conversation in Pakistani society and policy makers about the role of gender norms produced through family, education and religion that devalues work women do both inside and outside the home. I also aim to provide a theoretical base for further research on women in STEMM in Pakistan, so the reasons behind women’s persistent under-representation in STEMM careers and education can be better analyzed.

Science, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics, Medicine

Dr. Ayesha Masood
Doctoral Student
Arizona State University

Fulbright PhD
Arizona State University




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