OBJECTIVE: To determine secular trends in the number of doctoral degrees among medical doctors in the Netherlands, and assess their future career perspectives. DESIGN: Retrospective cohort study. METHOD: Data on awarded doctoral degrees in the period 1992-2018 were acquired from all medical faculties in the Netherlands. For the 2008 cohort of graduates, I assessed 10-year career perspectives by determining their job affiliation and number of scientific publications in PubMed as of 2019. RESULTS: The average number of doctorate degrees awarded per medical faculty increased from 64 in 1992 to 198 in 2018, largely due to an increase in the number of female graduates, who comprised 60-65% of graduates in recent years. Nearly half of all PhD graduates were medical doctors. Of 368 medical doctors in the year 2008, 43% had an academic affiliation 10 years after graduation, similar for men and women (odds ratio [95% CI] for women: 1.40 [0.92-2.14]). During the intermediate 10 years, they published a median 7 scientific papers (interquartile range: 2-20), of which 1 (0-3) were written as lead author and 0 (0-2) as senior author. Men published more often than women (9 [3-27] vs. 6 [2-15] papers, P=0.03), in particular when situated in an academic work environment (23 [11-47] vs. 12 [5-25], P=0.005). CONCLUSION: The number of doctoral degrees awarded at medical faculties in the Netherlands has increased threefold over the past 30 years. While 10-year career perspectives after their viva were similar across gender, scientific output of men during this period exceeded that of women.

Nederlands Tijdschrift voor Geneeskunde
Erasmus MC: University Medical Center Rotterdam

Wolters, F. (2020). Academische carrièreperspectieven van gepromoveerde dokters: Een landelijk cohortonderzoek in de periode 1992-2018. Nederlands Tijdschrift voor Geneeskunde, 164. Retrieved from http://hdl.handle.net/1765/133085