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Karina Sánchez Cortes


International Research Training Group 'Temporalities of Future'

Dynamics of Aspiration and Anticipation

PhD Candidate

Project: "Gender and Social Inequalities in Admission to Higher Education: 2016-1 Generation of UNAM Degree"


Since 07/2019

PhD student with International Research Training Group ‘Temporalities of Future’

05/2014 – 04/2019

Master in Political and Social Studies, National Autonomous University of Mexico, Mexico

01/2015 – 12/2015

Master Research stay in Center for Research and Gender Studies, National Autonomous University of Mexico, Mexico

05/2001 – 05/2008

Bachelor in Sociology, National Autonomous University of Mexico, Mexico

09/2008 – 12/2008

Diploma in Social Theory: “Individual and Social Order. Readings from the crisis of modernity”, Autonomous University of Mexico City, Mexico

 Work Experience

Since 05/2019

Researcher with International Research Training Group ‘Temporalities of Future’

08/2017 – 12/2018

Academic Director at the “Observatory of Youth Rights of Mexico” project, Ateneo Nacional de la Juventud & Red de Analistas y Evaluadores de Políticas Públicas

07/2015 – 21/2018

Researcher at the “School and social profile of the 2016-1 generation to the undergraduate degrees of the UNAM” project, Research Institute on University and Education, National Autonomous University of Mexico, Mexico

05/2015 – 12/2018

Assistant teacher at the “Laboratory of Qualitative Techniques in Social Research” and “Development of Analytical Skills”, National Autonomous University of Mexico, Mexico

08/2015 – 06/2016

Research Co-Coordinator at the “Diagnosis of the LGBT situation and the recognition of their rights” project, Vanguardia Política Consultores.

03/2016 – 06/2016

Research Co-Coordinator at the “Diagnosis of Development and the cultural implications of the application of gender parity” project, Vanguardia Política Consultores

08/2008 – 06/2013

Assistant director of logistics, research and fieldwork, Luna de Barro SA de CV


Project: "Gender and social inequalities in admission to higher education: 2016-1 generation of UNAM degree"


Prof. Dr. Marianne Braig, Freie Universität Berlin

For a long time, women's access to higher education was extremely restricted because “traditionally” it was thought that formal university education was a space reserved only for people with specific social conditions, who were mostly men of high social classes. It was until the second half of the twentieth century, in the framework of processes of expansion of higher education systems and social transformations linked to the claim of rights of minorities and vulnerable groups, that women began to be incorporated systematically and increasingly in universities and institutions of higher education. Its participation in the global enrollment of higher education grew from less than 30% in 1970 to more than 50% in 2010, in Latin America it was from less than 30% to almost 60%; and, specifically in Mexico, from less than 30% to a little more than 50%.

Women's access to higher education expresses, to some extent, social changes related to the conception of the "must be" of women and men in education. This fact is sociologically relevant since education in general and the higher level in particular can now be conceived as a liberating and empowering environment for women's autonomy. However, education is also a social institution in which mechanisms of transmission and reproduction of a regime that structures the perception and organization (concrete and symbolic) of all social life based on sex and that establishes unequal parameters in the access, use and disposition of educational resources to each student.

With this backdrop, in this research I propose the existence of an inequality based on the structuring and prevalence of a gender regime that is specifically expressed in career selection and income differentiated by sex in the fields of knowledge and careers. Although women have a greater presence in most fields of study and in most careers, there are fields of knowledge where the increase in women has been very limited and has historically had a greater male presence. Specifically, in the fields of study and careers related to engineering and “exact” sciences, we find that the presence of women is minimal and their incorporation has not occurred in the same magnitude as in other fields of study. Worldwide around 30% of women entering higher education choose a career related to the fields of exact sciences, technology, engineering or mathematics. It is particularly low in communication technologies (ICT) (3%), natural sciences, mathematics and statistics (5%) and engineering, manufacturing and construction (8%).

Punctually, I am interested in knowing how this gender inequality is expressed in admission to the National Autonomous University of Mexico and how it intersects with other inequalities such as socioeconomic. In this sense, I ask what are the social, personal and academic conditions that define the trends of students entering different areas of study and careers? And, specifically, in the context of this income differentiated by sex, what factors influence women to break with the traditional schemes and choose to enter careers that are symbolically considered only for men.

Studying these young women is relevant because, as Simone de Beauvoir expressed, as privileged women who seek in their profession an economic and social autonomy. We must know them to answer the question about the possibilities of women and their future.


Sánchez Cortes, Karina (2016) (Coord.): "Diagnóstico Nacional sobre la situación LGBTTTI y el Reconocimiento de sus Derechos", Ed. PRD, Vanguardia Política Consultores, S. C.

Sánchez Cortes, Karina (2016)(Coord.): "Diagnóstico del Desarrollo y las implicaciones culturales de la aplicación de la paridad de género", Ed. PRD, Vanguardia Política Consultores, S. C.


Sánchez Cortes, Karina (2018): "El observatorio de Derechos Juveniles, políticas públicas y juventud", in: El punto sobre la i, Year 7, Num. 35, March-April.

Sánchez Cortes, Karina (2016): "La feminización de la matrícula en la educación superior en México. Aportes desde la Sociología de la Educación", Memoria Académica delELMECS, Mendoza, FCPYS-UNCUYO, 16 al 18 de noviembre de 2016. sitio web: http://elmecs.fahce.unlp.edu.ar - ISSN 2408-3976

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