Citizenship Tasks and Women Physicians: Additional Woman Tax in Academic Medicine?

Priscila Rodrigues Armijo, Julie K. Silver, Allison R. Larson, Philomena Asante, Sasha Shillcutt

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

20 Scopus citations


Our aim was to evaluate differences in reported citizenship tasks among women physicians due to personal or demographic factors and time spent performing those tasks for work. Materials and Methods: Attendees of a national women physician's leadership conference (Brave Enough Women Physicians Continuing Medical Education Conference) replied to a survey using Qualtrics (2019 Qualtrics, Provo, UT), in September 2019. Data collected included age, race, ethnicity, training level, medical practice, specialty, current annual total compensation, educational debt, and number of children. We asked about employment-related citizenship tasks, including time spent on those activities, and perceived obligation to volunteer for citizenship tasks. Descriptive and impact of demographic factors on those opinions were evaluated using IBM SPSS v26.0. Results: Three hundred eighty-nine women physicians replied. When compared with their younger counterparts, women physicians older than 49 years stated they feel obligated to volunteer for these tasks because of their gender (p = 0.049), and were less likely able to decide which citizenship tasks they were assigned to (p = 0.021). Furthermore, a higher proportion of women of color physicians perceived race as a factor in feeling obligated to volunteer for work-related citizenship tasks, when compared with White women physicians (p < 0.001). Additionally, nearly 50% of women physicians reported spending more time on citizenship tasks than their male counterparts. Conclusion: Our findings suggest that gender, race, and age may play a role in the decision of women physicians to participate in work-related citizenship tasks. To our knowledge, this is the first study to report on work-related citizenship tasks as described by women physicians. Still, an in-depth assessment on the role citizenship tasks play in the culture of healthcare is warranted.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)935-943
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Women's Health
Issue number7
StatePublished - Jul 2021


  • academic service
  • cultural diversities
  • healthcare disparities
  • organizational citizenship
  • women physicians

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine(all)


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