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Why Gender Equity is Everyone's Business

2 Nov 2015, 22:45 UTC
Why Gender Equity is Everyone's Business
(200 words excerpt, click title or image to see full post)

I thought of starting this blog entry with a top-10 list of reasons, but it is hard to balance humor and earnestness (I'm a diversity geek, after all!), so I'll take the earnest approach. Perhaps with a dash of humor. First, the earnest:A few weeks ago a faculty colleague at another university asked what fraction of female faculty members are supportive of Women in Science or Gender Equity groups at my university and others. My colleague was struggling with hearing from women who didn't want to associate with such groups. As a result, they are sometimes advised by men!My back-of-the-envelope estimate is that fewer than 1/4 of women faculty (in fields where women are underrepresented) affiliate with gender equity groups. The numbers of women in astronomy and physics at MIT are too small for a meaningful estimate, so I am averaging over many other departments.Of course, the fraction of men who affiliate with such groups is much smaller: that is one measure of gender inequity!The implicit question was, "How can I encourage more of my female colleagues to join our support group?" I often struggle with how to encourage busy faculty to support diversity, equity, and inclusion efforts: an inner ...

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