Summaries - Office of Research & Innovation
Back Intangible Benefits in the Composition of the Marine Corps
|Division||Research & Sponsored Programs|
|Department||Naval Research Program|
Seagren, Chad W.
Bacolod, Marigee P.
|Sponsor||NPS Naval Research Program (Navy)|
When the combat exclusion for women in the Marine Corps was lifted in 2016, the new policy made 54,000 billets - approximately 1/3 of the entire Table of Organization - available to qualified women. In addition, 32 previously closed Primary Military Occupational Specialties and 16 Additional Military Occupational Specialties were opened to women. While the change in the combat exclusion policy is not the focus of this project, the policy change has dramatically altered the nature and quantity of the opportunities the Marine Corps can offer to women. In light of these changes it is necessary for the Marine Corps to assess the current status of women in the corps, anticipate how the roles female Marines fill may evolve over time, and determine the extent to which resources should be used to shape that evolution.
Women make up approximately 8% of the active component of the Marine Corps, a number well less than half of the proportion of women in the other military services. Currently, the Deputy Commandant for Manpower and Reserve Affairs has no tools at his disposal to assess whether 8% is too many or too few. One can imagine a wide array of benefits that additional women would bring to the Marine Corps. However, given the unique challenges that life as a Marine offers, it is also the case that Marine Corps tends to draw recruits from a vanishingly small pool of qualified and interested candidates.
This project seeks to help determine the “right” number of women in the Marine Corps. After closely examining the current state of women in the Marine Corps, we will examine the civilian labor market for occupations roughly equivalent to those found in the Marine Corps and econometrically determine an upper bound to the feasibility of increasing the number of women in certain job specialties. This research will provide the foundation necessary to ultimately determine the optimal number of females in the Marine Corps.
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