“Data show extent of sexism in physics”

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Experiment at Fermilab gave women fewer opportunities to present at conferences.

Women are poorly represented in physics, making up just 10% of faculty in the United States, for example, but the reasons for this have proved contentious. Now a particle physicist claims to have hard data showing institutional sexism at an experiment at one of America’s highest-profile physics labs.

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Update: Link to full study here thanks to Historiann.

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0 Responses to “Data show extent of sexism in physics”

  1. Pingback: Like a pig to the slaughter : Historiann : History and sexual politics, 1492 to the present

  2. lquilter says:

    Does it surprise anyone that the first commenter on the Nature thread is, apparently, a sexist troll? And moreover, someone whose evidence is gender breakdowns of Nobel laureates — an award that is as much about politics as it is about genius. (Plus, shocking that someone self-identifying as a scientist would confuse correlation with causation.)

    Anyway, just wanted to flag the comments made by Christine Nattras on that thread. She posted the following cites:

    Let’s talk about data. (I apologize but the form doesn’t let me put in white space.)

    1. When women and men successfully complete the same task, women’s success is attributed to luck while men’s success is attributed to skill. (Kay Deaux and Tim Emswiller, “Explanations of successful performance on sex-linked tasks,” Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 1974, Vol. 29, No. 1, 80-85)

    2. Job applicants with identical resumes are rated as more qualified if the name on the resume is recognizably male rather than female. (Rhea Steinpreis, Katie Anders, and Dawn Ritzke, “The Impact of Gender on the Review of the Cirricula Vitae of Job Applicants and Tenure Candidates: A National Empirical Study,” Sex Roles, 1999, Vol. 41, No. 718)

    3. Women’s letters of recommendation say they are “nice” and “work hard” while men’s say they are “smart” and “talented.” (Frances Trix and Carolyn Psenka, “Exploring the Color of Glass: Letters of Recommendation for Female and Male Medical Faculty,” Discourse Society, 2003, Vol. 14, 191)

    4. When a major ecology journal switched from a single blind to a double blind review of papers, the proportion of papers accepted went from a lower proportion of women than the population of researchers to equal or slightly above the proportion of women. (Budden, A. E. /et al/. Trends Ecol. Evol. 23, 4–6 (2008).)