The Committee on Women in Science, Engineering, and Medicine (CWSEM) is a joint unit of the National Academies of Sciences, the National Academy of Engineering, and the National Academy of Medicine, and it serves under the oversight of the presidents of those three Academies. In this capacity, CWSEM serves as an institutional focal point for the three Academies on issues of gender equity in science, engineering, and medicine. CWSEM operates out of the Policy and Global Affairs division of the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine.


CWSEM’s mandate is to use scientific evidence to advance gender equity in science, engineering, and medicine. The committee accomplishes this by bringing leading experts together to offer cutting edge advice to a range of key stakeholders in government, academia, and industry, nationally and internationally, via high impact reports and convening activities. The committee takes an intersectional approach to its work and considers how multiple forms of discrimination, such as racism and sexism, intersect to shape the experiences of individuals and create structural and systemic inequities that in particular create barriers for the most marginalized groups, such as women of color, sexual and gender minority women, and women with disabilities.


The membership of CWSEM comprises scholars and leaders working to promote gender equity in science, engineering, and medicine, many of whom are elected members of the National Academy of Sciences, National Academy of Engineering, and/or National Academy of Medicine. CWSEM members initiate, scope, and oversee activities operating under the committee’s auspices, serve as liaisons to the National Academies leadership and membership, and participate directly in CWSEM activities, such as consensus studies and workshops.