SPIE Career Center
Salary Report

2018 Optics and Photonics Global Salary Report


Women make up 19% of the respondents to the survey, 28% of students, and 16% of full-time workers. Women earn less than men overall, with respective median salaries of $58,542 and $75,000.

The largest wage differences are associated with lower-income Asian and Middle East countries, employment at not-for-profit organizations, and employment of more than 30 years. Wage gaps persist in most demographic subsets of the data, though differences are lower in early career stages. Women in military/defense and at “other research institutes” earn more than men.

Median Salary by Gender and Region
Median Salary by Gender and Years Employed
Women and men report similar levels of job satisfaction in most categories. The largest difference of opinion concerns fairness of pay and promotion: 71% or women feel that they are paid fairly, versus 79% of men. Equal percentages of women and men (85%) enjoy their work.
Median Salary by Gender and Employer Type
Job Satisfaction by Gender