The Office of the Chief Scientist has just released the 2020 STEM Workforce Report. Australia’s workforce of 11 million people includes almost two million workers with a STEM qualification – 6% (907,639 ) have a university STEM qualification.
Among the report’s findings were:
- the strong value of a STEM degree to students – with a larger share of STEM graduates in the highest income bracket (over $104,000) in Australia than non-STEM graduates
- that 81% of the university STEM-qualified population were in the labour force—either working or looking for work
- that the STEM workforce is ageing but driven more by VET qualified STEM population than the university STEM qualified population
- that between 2006 and 2016, the female university STEM qualified population increased 2 percentage points from 27% to 29% – so some progress on this front
- that women are most acutely under-represented in engineering (15%), physics (20%) and astronomy (20%), and technology (23%)
- that those with STEM qualifications are widely dispersed across the economy but are predominantly employed in the Professional, Scientific and Technical Services, Education and Training, Public Administration and Safety, Manufacturing and Healthcare and Social Assistance industries.