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Friday, March 27, 2015

This Is How We Can Get More Women Working In Tech

Did those adorable Supergirls at the fifth-annual White House Science Fair this week make you a little weepy, or was that just me? continues Refinery29.

Photo: Refinery29

I have an excuse, because I saw their picture after reading the latest report on the status of women in technology, out from the American Association of University Women. And, no surprise, the statistics aren’t good. The research report focused on women in computing and engineering, two fields that make up more than 80% of the STEM (science, technology, engineering, and applied mathematics) workforce, and which have remained stubbornly male-dominated despite an increase in gender equity in many other areas.

In engineering, one of the most traditionally male industries, women made up just 12% of the workforce in 2013. And, in computing and mathematical occupations they made up 26% — almost 10% less than they did in the 1990s. These numbers are a major problem. “The overarching thing the research pointed out was the ‘boys’ club’ culture in these fields, which isn’t just holding back women, but the companies and employers themselves,” says Christianne Corbett, one of the report’s co-authors. Innovation needs diversity in order to be the best it can be, because as Corbett points out, “Technology is shaping the way we live more and more, so we really can't afford to not have women's perspectives at the table.”

Instead of just recounting the bias and depressing statistics found in recent research, AAUW analyzed the findings and came up with some actual recommendations that companies, universities, and women in tech can use to help reverse these trends. Here are some of the most interesting.

Solving the Equation (introduction)


Additional resources

Get the Solving the Equation Report (PDF)

Source: Refinery29 and AAUW Channel (YouTube)