My favorite story on gender bias in science

“Yeah, sure female researchers had a clear disadvantage when applying for a lab manager position. But be serious: Who would want a female in this position anyway!”

In their study “Can Evidence Impact Attitudes? Public Reactions to Evidence of Gender Bias in STEM Fields.”, the authors Corinne A. Moss-Racusin, Aneta Molenda and Charlotte Cramer present social media reactions on the results of a study they did back in 2012: This study showed clear disadvantages for women in STEM. However, more and better information does not necessarily change opinion:

Twenty percent of all the comments justified the existence of gender bias, such this one: “In nearly all the labs I’ve worked, the people who spent the most nights and weekends in the lab were invariably men. I’ve never actually seen a female set up a cot to sleep in the lab while working on experiments.” Of these kinds of comments, some 80 percent were made by men.

I guess it is the genes. Or that women don’t like camping. However, it leaves me speechless: If evidence does not convince people to not discriminate based on superficial characteristics like gender (or race, for that matter), what will?

https://www.insidehighered.com/news/2015/01/08/new-study-finds-men-more-likely-doubt-evidence-gender-bias-science-fields

More about the original study, by Corinne A. Moss-Racusin, John F. Dovidio, Victoria L. Brescoll, Mark J. Graham and Jo Handelsman: https://www.insidehighered.com/news/2012/09/21/study-offers-new-evidence-scientists-are-biased-against-women

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s