This paper explores the factors that contribute to the "leaky pipeline" in science, technology and medicine in Taiwan. The term "leaky pipeline" refers to the steady attrition of women throughout their careers in science, technology and medicine-fields in which men constitute the majority. As a result of this attrition, women are under-represented in the top positions. This phenomenon has been well studied in the United States, and based on the available data in the Chinese and English-language literature, this paper focuses on: (1) the social-cultural factors that keep young women away from science and medicine; (2) the difficulties faced by woman scientists when trying to balance work and family responsibilities; and (3) the impact of the pervasive masculine culture on training and promotion in career development. Conclusions include suggestions for improvements for equality between the sexes in science education, family responsive policies, and institutional reform.
2010 Elsevier. Published by Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.