The Foundation researches and educates on women’s issues to acknowledge barriers and identify opportunities.


Commissioned by the WNY Women’s Foundation and created by UB Regional Institute, the 2010 Pathways to Progress Report positioned the Foundation to take a deep dive into the issues facing women and girls in our region. As a result, Foundation funding and initiatives targeted three profiled women, revealing the nuances of barriers and opportunities facing similar women in WNY.

New pathways for women in WNY are emerging. The Foundation reviewed recent reports and will release Pathways to Success in November 2017, revealing updated profiles of women and girls in WNY with opportunities overcome to their barriers to success.

In our effort to educate the community and raise awareness, the Foundation has curated research and organized it by topic area. The research below can be filtered by topic with citations and links to original researchers. Alternately, it can be sorted by date of publication. Contact us if your organization has a report to include.

Realizing gender equality’s $12 trillion economic opportunity

Narrowing the gender gap will result in a large potential for economic growth. This report estimates the tangible progress in both work and society needed to capture this potential and the spending on essential services needed to spur that progress.

Published Aug. 2017 McKinsey & Company

Women in Leadership

WNY Women's Foundation Fact Sheet

Published Aug. 2017 WNY Women's Foundation

Women & Children Living in Poverty

WNY Women's Foundation Fact Sheet

Published Aug. 2017 WNY Women's Foundation

NYS Paid Family Leave

WNY Women's Foundation Fact Sheet

Published Aug. 2017 WNY Women's Foundation

Intimate Partner Violence

WNY Women's Foundation Fact Sheet

Published Aug. 2017 WNY Women's Foundation

Gender Equity in Leadership

WNY Women's Foundation Fact Sheet

Published Aug. 2017 WNY Women's Foundation

Early Childhood & Child Care

WNY Women's Foundation Fact Sheet

Published Aug. 2017 WNY Women's Foundation

Child Care Subsidy

WNY Women's Foundation Fact Sheet

Published Aug. 2017 WNY Women's Foundation

Girlhood Interrupted: The Erasure of Black Girls’ Childhood

First study focused on “adultification” of black girls shows significant bias toward girls starting at age 5, younger than in previous research on black boys

Published Jun. 2017 Center on Poverty and Inequality - Georgetown Law

Watching Gender How Stereotypes in Movies and TV Impact Kids’ Development

"Our comprehensive research review shows that children who are fed gender stereotypes may internalize those roles, shaping their behavior for years to come and that girls aren’t alone in their struggles with restrictive identity norms."

Published Jun. 2017 Common Sense Media

Third-Grade Proficiency in Erie County

The importance of third-graders performing with grade-level proficiency and the proficiency level of third graders in Erie County.

Published Jun. 2017 United Way of Buffalo and Erie County

Women in State Government: Still Too Few

In recent years the movement of women into state-level offices has slowed after several decades of gains. Efforts to actively recruit women for elective and appointive positions will be critical in determining what the future holds for women in state government.

Published Jun. 2017 The Council on State Governments

The Status of Black Women in the United States

The Status of Black Women in the United States seeks to address the gap in research on Black women’s well-being and to provide data that can inform policy and programmatic changes to benefit Black women and their families.

Published Jun. 2017 Institute for Women's Policy Research

State of Play in WNY

For a complete look at the state of youth sports in our communities.

Published Jun. 2017 United Way of Buffalo and Erie County

Why the federal government should subsidize childcare and how to pay for it.

Now is the time and the opportunity for serious political consideration of new funding and delivery models for childcare.

Published Mar. 2017 Brookings Institution

The Family-Friendly Campus Imperative

This paper presents a portrait of the community college student parent population, their unique needs, and discusses the role that child care plays in their educational success.

Published Mar. 2017 Institute for Women's Policy Research

Closing the Skills Gap

The “skills gap” in the United States is serious. Here is how to do better.

Published Feb. 2017 McKinsey & Company

Supports that Matter in Workforce Development Programs

This report captures participant perspectives on the role of supportive services in facilitating their success in job training, the availability of supportive services, the unmet needs of participants, and the significance of job training for them.

Published Feb. 2017 Institute for Women's Policy Research

Domestic Violence: Finding Safety and Support

It is not always easy to recognize abuse. This booklet serves as a tool for victims, friends, family members, and professionals to recognize domestic violence and ways to seek help.

Published Jan. 2017 NYS Office for the Prevention of Domestic Violence

Child Care Brief


Published Jan. 2017 US Department of Health & Human Services

Representation Matters

A stock of the experiences, perspectives, approaches, and influence of women in a polarized, as well as male-dominated, U.S. Congress.

Published Jan. 2017 Center for American Women and Politics (Rutgers); Eagleton Institute of Politics (Rutgers)

The State of Gender Equality in the Workplace 2016

Findings on the wide range of issues affecting women in the workplace, ranging from how employers can attract and recruit women, to what areas of focus will help them retain women, and what corporate practices and employer benefits correlate with women's job satisfaction.

Published Dec. 2016 Fairy Godboss

Financial Hardship in Erie County

Financial hardship is not limited to families living in conditions of poverty or individuals experiencing unemployment. Working families also experience financial hardship.

Published Nov. 2016 United Way of Buffalo and Erie County

Undervalued and Underpaid in America Women in Low-Wage, Female-Dominated Jobs

This report investigates women’s experiences in large, low-wage, growing, female-dominated occupations, comparing demographic data and indicators of economic security between 1994 and 2014, and projecting growth rates to 2024.

Published Nov. 2016 Institute for Women's Policy Research

Domestic Violence Counts

New York Summary

Published Sep. 2016 National Network to End Domestic Violence

Women in the Workplace 2016

Women in the Workplace 2016 is a comprehensive study of the state of women in corporate America.

Published Sep. 2016 McKinsey & Company

WNY Girls in Sports

The purpose of this report is to explore the following questions: 1. Are girls in Buffalo active and playing sports, and do gender disparities exist? 2. What opportunities exist for girls to play sports in Buffalo? 3. What barriers are most identified as hindering sports participation locally? 4. How have these barriers been overcome for urban girls in other cities?

Published Sep. 2016 United Way of Buffalo and Erie County

Giving to Women and Girls

This study highlights new data to understanding who gives to women’s and girls’ causes and their motivations for support

Published May. 2016 IUPUI Women's Philanthropy Institute

The power of parity: Advancing women’s equality in the United States

Every state and city in the United States has the opportunity to further gender parity, which could add $4.3 trillion to the country’s economy in 2025.

Published Apr. 2016 McKinsey & Company

Barriers and Bias

The report examines the causes of women’s underrepresentation in leadership roles in business, politics, and education and suggests what we can do to change the status quo.

Published Mar. 2016 American Association of University Women

Shortchanged in Retirement

The Continuing Challenges to Women’s Financial Future

Published Mar. 2016 National Institute on Retirement Security

Pathways to Equity Narrowing the Wage Gap by Improving Women’s Access to Good Middle-Skill Jobs

This report addresses women’s access to well-paid, growing, middle-skill jobs (jobs that do not require a bachelor’s degree).

Published Mar. 2016 Institute for Women's Policy Research

The Gender Wage Gap and Public Policy

The basic facts about the gender wage gap, summarizing data on earnings differences between women and men by race and ethnicity, education, and occupation and reasons for the gender wage gap, its consequences for women and their families, and policies that can help to close it.

Published Feb. 2016 Institute for Women's Policy Research

Women and Wealth: Insights for Grantmakers

IInvesting in strategies that promote women’s wealth not only improves women’s financial status, but also the financial status of subsequent generations and improves our nation’s economy.

Published Jan. 2016 Asset Funders Network

Women Give

Women Give 2016 investigates how giving by young adults has changed over four decades, according to gender. It also explores how women’s role in the family and in decision-making about giving has changed over time and how this impacts giving.

Published Jan. 2016 IUPUI Women's Philanthropy Institute

A New Vision for Child Care in the United States

A Proposed New Tax Credit to Expand High-Quality Child Care

Published Sep. 2015 Center for American Progress

Moms at Work The Working Mother Report

The impact that the intersection of work life has on working mothers, their careers and their families

Published Sep. 2015 Working Mother Research Institute

Teen Girls and Leadership Biases

Teen girls who are the key to closing the gender gap appear to face an age-old and powerful barrier: gender bias, and specifically biases about their leadership.

Published Jul. 2015 Harvard Graduate School of Education

Solving the Equation The Variables for Women’s Success in Engineering and Computing

Advancing girls and women in the STEM field by looking at stereotypes and biases, social relevance, cultivating a sense of belonging and changing the environment.

Published Jul. 2015 American Association of University Women

Poverty Interrupted

Applying Behavioral Science to the Context of Chronic Scarcity

Published May. 2015 Ideas 42

How and Why Women Give

The purpose of this literature review is to summarize the existing academic research on women, gender, and philanthropy and create a comprehensive picture of what we know about women’s giving and gender differences in giving today.

Published May. 2015 IUPUI Women's Philanthropy Institute

ACEs Handout

Stress & Early Brain Growth: Understanding Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACEs)

Published Jan. 2015 Spokane Washington Regional Health District

Women in the Workplace 2015

A comprehensive study of the state of women in corporate America

Published Jan. 2015 McKinsey & Company

The Status of Women in the States

The Status of Women in New York, 2015: Highlights

Published Jan. 2015 Institute for Women's Policy Research

Perspectives in Philanthropy: The Advancement of Women and Girls

The Advancement of Women and Girls” includes a broad range of articles that highlight the tremendous work both individuals and institutions are engaged in to empower women and girls all over the world.

Published Jan. 2015 Morgan Stanley

Annual Report on the State of Homelessness in WNY

Key findings and recommendations to address homelessness in WNY

Published Jan. 2015 Homeless Alliance of WNY

Black Girls Matter: Pushed Out, Overpoliced, & Underprotected

The research reflected in this report was designed to elevate the voices of Black girls and other girls of color affected by punitive policies so as to deepen our understanding of the ways they experience inhospitable educational environments and to produce recommendations designed to eliminate those inequities.

Published Jan. 2015 African American Policy Forum

Unlocking Opportunity for African American Girls: A Call to Action for Educational Equity

This report shines a spotlight on the barriers faced by African American girls and women, and the impact on their lives. It contains recommendations for educators, school leaders, communities, advocates, policymakers, and philanthropic organizations to take action to advance the success of African American girls.

Published Sep. 2014 National Women's Law Center

Examining the Impact of Afterschool STEM Impacts

A look at the impact a strong STEM experience can make on participating youth.

Published Jul. 2014 Afterschool Alliance

Still Mending the Patchwork

A report examining county-by-county inequities in child care subsidy administration in New York State

Published Jun. 2014 Empire Justice Center

The Confidence Gap

Evidence shows that women are less self-assured than men—and that to succeed, confidence matters as much as competence. Here's why, and what to do about it.

Published May. 2014 The Atlantic

The Women’s Leadership Gap

Women's leadership by the numbers.

Published Mar. 2014 Center for American Progress

Women Rising: The Unseen Barriers

The subtle gender bias that persists in organizations and in society disrupts the learning cycle at the heart of becoming a leader.

Published Sep. 2013 Harvard Business Review

Women in the Workplace: A Research Roundup

A compilation of research by business, psychology, and sociology scholars offers a window into women’s collective experiences in the workplace, confirming some intuitive notions and calling others into question.

Published Sep. 2013 Harvard Business Review

Child Care in Crisis

A Report from the NYS Assembly Child Care Workgroup

Published Feb. 2013 NYS Assembly

Quality: What it Is and Why it Matters in Early Childhood Education

This policy brief explains why quality matters, demonstrates what quality looks like, and details how it should be measured.

Published Sep. 2012 Schuyler Center for Analysis and Advocacy

High Potentials in the Pipeline: Leaders Pay it Forward

Key findings, illustrative quotes, and questions for consideration included throughout this report are designed to encourage reflection on how talent is identified and developed within your organization.

Published Jan. 2012 Catalyst

Women in the Economy

Addendum to the Special Report "Unlocking the full potential of women in the US economy"

Published Apr. 2011 McKinsey & Company

Unlocking the Full Potential of Women in the US Economy

Corporate America's business case for developing, retaining and advancing women.

Published Jan. 2011 McKinsey & Company

Childhood and Intergenerational Poverty

The long term consequences of growing up poor

Published Nov. 2009 National Center for Children in Poverty

Accelerating Change for Women and Girls: The Role of Women’s Funds

The current landscape of philanthropy focused on women and girls and document the specific role played by women’s funds.

Published Apr. 2009 Women's Funding Network

Women Matter 2

Female Leadership, a competitive edge for the future

Published Jan. 2008 McKinsey & Company

Why Early Care and Education Deserves as Much Attention, or More, than Prekindergarten Alone

High-quality early care and education (ECE) programs promote positive child outcomes, allow parents to work, and contribute to the local economy.

Published Jan. 2007 Applied Development Science