A study funded by the Australian Government’s Women in the Aviation Industry Initiative (AGWAI) has released its findings into what motivates and discourages women from entering the aviation industry.

Led by Aviation/Aerospace Australia in partnership with Monash University, RMIT University and the University of New South Wales, the Barriers to the Pipeline Research Project surveyed 180 people from across the industry – with 86 per cent of respondents being women.

The research showed that, although progress has been made regarding women’s experience in the aerospace sector, 80 per cent of respondents felt the greatest barrier in the industry is male domination.

90 per cent of participants also agreed the strongest factor driving female recruitment was a passion for aviation.

Federal Minister for Transport, Regional Development and Local Government, Catherine King, said the study’s findings have helped the Government to identify key barriers and it can now move to address them.  

“This research helps us identify what barriers exist, as well as what new and effective mechanisms could be established to overcome barriers and empower the next generation of women to join the aviation sector,” Ms King said. 

“It will also help the aviation industry improve work practices and develop strategies to attract and retain talent, supporting a stronger aviation workforce into the future.” 

Having already run for four years, the Women in the Aviation Industry Initiative will continue to support activities to increase female participation across the aviation industry until 2026, after an additional $4 million in funding from the Australian Government.

“With 80 per cent agreeing male domination of the industry is the greatest barrier, it is clear there continues to be a role for the Women in the Aviation Industry Initiative, not just in improving representation and diversity, but also in contributing to broader action to see more inclusive and equitable work environments,” Ms King said. 

“I’m determined to see greater female participation not just in aviation, but all across the transport sector.”

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