The first symposium on women in public administration was published in 1976 and focused on three central topics: discrimination against, underrepresentation of, and underutilization of women in public service. Over four decades later, these issues are still pressing and continue to dominate the conversation surrounding women in public administration in the United States. The renewed and continued focus on equal pay, paid family leave, the absence of women in key leadership positions, women’s healthcare options, and reproductive rights remain center stage in the national policy arena. The January 2017 symposium in Administration & Society highlights what is missing from the conversation and how, in the field of public administration, we can be leaders on these topics. The authors have gone beyond the common distinctions of identifying barriers and obstacles, counting the number of women in leadership positions, or rehashing arguments for greater equality. These articles carve out ways of considering women, gender, and diversity issues in a broader public administration research agenda.
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