There's a canyon-sized gender gap in the academic science world. Officials keep pushing to move women into the field, and the number of degrees granted to them has increased, but those degrees don't necessarily result in more women working in the sciences. A new study shows that science faculty see female students as less competent than their male counterparts, and it could cost them jobs, a fair salary, and mentoring opportunities.
To find this out, researchers sent job application materials from a potential student eyeing a lab manager position to biology, chemistry, and physics professors at six (anonymous) universities across the country. They only changed one variable in the materials: the gender of the applicant. That was enough for the faculty to say, on average, that the female applicant wasn't as hirable or as competent, and was less deserving of mentoring and even the same salary as male students. It didn't matter if you considered only the male or female faculty members; they both favored the male student at about the same rate.
Cultural stereotypes about "what makes a good woman"--friendliness, warmth, less competence--might subtly contribute to a bias, says Corinne Moss-Racusin, lead author of the study. That doesn't mean faculty members consciously dismiss female students, or want to prevent them from succeeding. But the consequences can be pernicious, as the study suggests.
There are ways to intervene and address the problem, Moss-Racusin says. Which is good, since it's a problem we as a country really want to address. A government report referenced in the study predicts a one million-worker deficit if we keep training engineers and scientists at current rates. Hiring more women into the field could help ease that.
The first step would be changing academic policies, Moss-Racusin says, such as adding oversight to mentoring programs to ensure they're fair between genders. And, of course, "educating the faculty members and students on the possible impact of bias would be critical." All work then needs to be done under "very clear, very transparent evaluation criteria."
We'll see if any changes are made based on the study, but at least anecdotally, Moss-Racusin says, the research has stirred up reactions from those who claim it "mirrors their experiences" in the science academia field.
Obviously this is the case. I mean, have you ever seen a woman drive? If they can't even operate an automobile, how can we possibly trust them with expensive lab equipment?
Also, their menstruation attracts bears.
The real question would be,
DOES THE SCIENTIFIC DATA SUPPORT THE IDEA OF FEMALES BEING LESS COMPETENT?
lol Great headline.
I didn't read this one but the headline and pic will have me smiling every time I see it though.
I hate and despise caricature and this author is guilty of this in spades. His graph of the income desparity 'Salary Conferral by Student Gender...' being a case in point.
When you do NOT scale the graph to show the RELATIVE differences between the wages but instead chop off the bottom of the graph you are attempting to EXAGGERATE those very differences unfairly.
A casual browser might see the bar graphs as meaning the women are offered less than one-third of the men's offers because they cut off the bottom 4/5th of the graph. But the facts are that it's about 26,500 versus 32,200 or about 17.7% lower--not 80% lower.
Please redo the graph and show the appropriate SCALE of the differences instead of EXAGERRATING them!!
And no in no way does this mean I support the way it's being handled world wide discriminating against women. Trust me I had my hands full competing with women on an equal footing which are easily as competent of a man if you give them the same tools.
When I read articles such as this I wonder if there is any recognition that there are differences in the ways that men and women deal with situations that challenge them.
I have noticed a trend over the years of having taught or coached both men and women in various situations where they are learning new things. Both male and females get frustrated when the desired results are not achieved. However the difference lies in what the two groups do with the frustration. I have more often seen that the guys tend to get more aggressive and want to kill whatever piece of equipment or system is not being cooperative where as the women (usually) do not display the same intensity.
I am not saying that this applies to every male and female but that it has occurred enough times to be noticeable as a tendency.
If the guys get an attitude toward the task of “You are not going to beat me” then this extra energy, when it is applied correctly, goes into problem solving. This is the behavior and attitude that produces results in areas like research and development where the whole job is mastering new challenges. Also I noticed that male graduate students are more likely to push the limits in their research where as the females stay more to the boundaries of the assignment.
Here in Germany they are now debating a law where it will be mandatory that 40% of the top management of the companies listed on the DAX stock index must be women….mandatory. If anybody really has the leadership qualifications to be in the top management of a company that large and complex, why do they need to a law to get them the position? Upon not getting a position such as that I would expect the candidate to say. “You do not think I can do the job hu…alright. I am going to start my own company, run it my way and take market share off you.” That is an example of the “You are not going to beat me” attitude in practice.
If Science Faculty believe men to be more competent, to the point that this is "confiming the obvious," then have you not proven that it is obvious that men ARE more competent.
You admit that to be the observation and practice of intellegent people who we trust to do science rationally.
This is more sociology than science, since you are relying on percetions rather than an objective standard, but it the vaccuum of objective standards, simple observation must do.
Therefore, I aplaude the article for once again proving man's scientific superiority over women. You have done a great thing for men's rights, and I look forward to being fairly paid more than my female coworkers for my suprior competency.
I agree with Gizmowiz, whether this chart was malicious or incompetence it removes any credibility to the entirety of the piece.
This article presumes there is a sexist disposition against women - ie. a dislike of hiring women for the arbitrary reason of not wanting women. However, all it does is present data that says all other things being equal, women are chosen less often; believed to be less valuable workers. It does nothing to address the veracity of the belief.
For any rational thinker, sufficiently proven stereotypes are perfectly acceptable reference points when dealing with an amorphous group. It becomes bigotry when, interacting with an individual, you hold them to, or refuse to let them disprove, the given stereotype in the face of contrary information. So the question is if this is sterotyping or bigorty?
These studies were admissions based without an interview. Without an interview, it is incredibly difficult to gauge the primary qualities necessary for research, which is personality, attitude, and drive. Personally I believe it is no accident that the girls who tend to like STEM have personality traits generally considered "masculine". Researchers may chose on gender because it is a good indicator in absence of more direct data on the individual. An individual guy can be a great researcher, or terrible researchers. So can an individual girl. There is nothing that says a girl can't be equally capable, or even more capable, than a guy. There is however, a disposition that says in a given population, guys more often possess traits desired for researchers than girls. And without knowing the invidual; with knowledge only of a laundry list of vague acomplishments and a statment of perpose, then judging likely personality by sterotype is acceptable.
The real problem is that they fail to differentiate the hiring based on the sex of the application reviewer. If female researchers ALSO prefer to hire males, then it is a pretty hard sell to claim oikophobia, in that they don't want females for the arbitrary reason of not wanting females. More likely, they also acknowledge that men tend to have traits that are more conducive to research.
And if female researchers prefer to hire females, and male researchers prefer to hire males, then it displays favoritism, potentially bigotry, but females are not in any morally superior position. If such a trend were found and could compensate for the disparity (fewer women favoring women vs more men favoring men leads to lower women to men ratio) then it would suggest that gender itself is irrelevant. And if it is irrelevant, we shouldn't be trying to influence it. We shouldn't care about it - period.
At the risk of using a political anecdote, it is suggested that racism prevents minorities, namely African Americans, from being elected to office. Quite the contrary however, statistics suggest that racism seems to prevents whites from being elected to office. If you consider the majority race in the constituency of each candidate, you'll find that both black and white people are elected to office in predominantly white areas, while white politicians are rarely elected in predominantly black areas. This even becomes more distinct, the correlation between race of candidate and constituent, if you separate them by Republican and Democrat. Against the wisdom of the current narrative, black Republicans are elected in areas of both mixed race and majority-white. Black Democrats are almost universally elected only by majority black constituencies. The statistics show Democrats voting along racial lines far more that Republicans. This article feels very similar.
As for the images provided, they are despicable, either through malevolence or incompetence. I normally discount such things to incompetence, but I am skeptically considering malevolence, due to the track record of Popsci on past info; Climate change specifically. Either way, that kind of agenda-forwarding manipulation discounts the credibility of the writer.
The integrity of popsci over the last several years has been found wanting. Not a good thing for a science website.
You hit the nail on the head with these affirmative-action requirments. There is actually a very real economic balancing force that is prevented from working by the mandate of hiring a quota of women for equal pay.
If someone believes a man will produce better work than a women, for whatever reason, and you require that he pay men and women equally, then he'll just say "why would I hire a woman when I can get a man for the same cost?" Demanding equal pay reduces hiring. If women are undervalued, fairly or not, then they need to work for less pay. If they are equally as valuable as men, then they will get hired more often. "Why would I hire a man when I can get an identically good woman for cheaper?"
And with more women in the workplace, they can start to change the perception, leading to women getting paid more, less, or equal to men as a group based on their common merit as a group. Mandating the hiring of women has the exact opposite effect. If you place less than competent women in positions because you are required to fill those positions with women, their incompetence will be noticed by others. Filling businesses with less competent women will futher push this (faulty, I believe) sterotype that women are not as capable as men. It will only re-inforce this negative sterotype the very program is designed to address.
We are assigning arbitrary parameters to the position here that are far more specific than the numbers indicate. A scientist is a person with a purpose, and latitude in achievement in even the closest environment. Therefore it is in the purpose of the given science position that must be addressed first, not salary, and many times not even in tech specific experience for consideration of assigned postings. Men are the hunter gatherers whether we act that role today or not. We are commonly better working in alpha roles where conformity of competing divisions are in play, while women are very suited for executive in positions that demand closer interactions between groups. Women reach for compromise that continues the overall goal, while men keep the specific goal as inviolate while considering compromise only if a lesser dominant male or female can't make the straight plan work when ordered to perform anyway. With budgets to protect, then salaries are significant to the issue, but there it all shows again too.
Obviously, the author has never worked in a private company's engineering dept. in a state like California. Due to rabid enforcement of EEOC laws, female engineers get preferential treatment in hiring and in promotion. I've worked in large engineering departments where there were only 2 or 3 female engineers out of 50 total. EEOC laws required 50% of raises and promotions each year to be given to females. Thus, those female engineers moved up the ladder much quicker than the men.
I don't mean to imply that the females were inferior engineers. They were typically quite good. It's just that they had things much better than the common perception would appear to indicate.
Well, that's the american stance. Ignorants all the time.
Your comment describing Americans as being "ignorants all the time" simply illustrates your own personal level of xenophobia and bigotry. The US has one of the world's highest rates of female university engineering and science graduates. But that does not imply that the total number of female and male science and engineering grads each year is equal.
Regardless, it's much better for women than Saudi Arabia or Iran.