Women in STEM/SET: gender gap research review of the United Arab Emirates (UAE) – a meta-analysis

Document Type


Source of Publication

Gender in Management

Publication Date



© 2020, Emerald Publishing Limited. Purpose: The purpose of this paper is to conduct a meta-analysis of existing research on gender discrimination/gender gap and women in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) in the UAE, specifically, and Middle East and North Africa (MENA) and Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) countries in general because of very limited number of articles published on the subject. It will give future researchers insights into the topics, methodologies and findings of such research from 1999–2019. Design/methodology/approach: This study conducts a meta-analysis of 72 articles using the Wildcard operator search method and the Boolean operator to perform an integrative literature search related to gender discrimination studies done in relationship to or specific to the UAE. Findings: In total, 88 papers related to the UAE and gender gap and women were identified. The articles were narrowed down to the ones published in high-ranked or Scopus journals (72). The findings suggest a decreasing trend in gender discrimination, but the issue still persists, requiring efforts from policy-makers, society and government to ensure gender parity is achieved. Academic research on women in STEM/SET workplace, specific to the UAE and the region, continue to slowly advance, with very few articles published in the same. Practical implications: The study provides insights into gender gap research done in the past ten years specific to the UAE national women and gender gap in general and their career choices and prospects in the STEM/SET domain. Social implications: There is a need to focus research on Emirati women in STEM careers to develop more insights into gender gap perceptions of Emirati women and identify challenges and methods to close the gender gap in STEM careers. Originality/value: This paper brings a holistic perspective to the meta-analysis of research on the gender gap and women in the UAE’s STEM domain.








Gender gap, Meta-analysis, SET, STEM, United Arab Emirates, Women

Scopus ID


Indexed in Scopus


Open Access