Author Topic: Women in science and technology  (Read 839 times)

Dave

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Women in science and technology
« on: March 04, 2018, 09:38:36 AM »
I have had a thing about women in science for about ten years now, always knew of those like Marie Curie of course, and Jocelyn Bell (Burnell) of pulsar fame, but then I heard of Rosalind Franklin, Hedy Lamarr and then Lise Meitner, Ada Lovelace, Grace Hopper and others. I recognised some of them never really got their due rewards.

Another, though not a practicing scientist but a science journalist, is Dava Sobel. Her story, book and docudrama, of the measuring of longditude at sea is great. And she has a style with cosmology that, at her best (as in the BBC Radio series "The Compass: Stargazing") I think compliments Carl Sagan. But here she talks of the astronomical ladies of Harvard (where Grace Hopper gets a mention in the intro):

https://youtu.be/v6ATOHdJkWk


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Tank

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Re: Women in science and technology
« Reply #1 on: March 04, 2018, 09:43:05 AM »
Good thread. I have made it 'sticky'.
If religions were TV channels atheism is turning the TV off.
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Remember, your inability to grasp science is not a valid argument against it.

Rift Zone

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Re: Women in science and technology
« Reply #2 on: March 20, 2018, 12:23:34 AM »
 :love:
In the last few millennia we have made the most astonishing and unexpected discoveries about the Cosmos and our place within it, explorations that are exhilarating to consider. They remind us that humans have evolved to wonder, that understanding is a joy, that knowledge is prerequisite to survival.   -Carl Sagan

Icarus

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Re: Women in science and technology
« Reply #3 on: March 20, 2018, 09:28:47 PM »
There is book out there titled:  A Lab Of Ones Own, by Patricia Fara (Oxford Press). 
During the war, many women in the UK replaced their aprons for chemical suits and stepped into previously male only domains of science. I have not read the book but it does sound interesting.

The same thing happened in the US in that time of urgency.  The men went away to war, the women took up the slack and they did it well. 

Another new  book about the female role in the development of the internet  is titled: Broad Band...The untold story of the women who made the internet. by Claire L. Evans. The title may be a sly attempt at dry humor.

xSilverPhinx

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Re: Women in science and technology
« Reply #4 on: April 01, 2018, 05:15:32 PM »
How did I miss this thread?  :o

I googled 'woman in science' because sadly, I don't know of that many women scientists compared to men. There's a wiki page on the topic:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Women_in_science

Lots of names I had never seen before in my life. :sad sigh:

Maybe, historically, if women had been given more space and encouraged in their scientific pursuits the world would be a different place. 
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Dave

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Re: Women in science and technology
« Reply #5 on: April 01, 2018, 06:16:45 PM »
How did I miss this thread?  :o

I googled 'woman in science' because sadly, I don't know of that many women scientists compared to men. There's a wiki page on the topic:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Women_in_science

Lots of names I had never seen before in my life. :sad sigh:

Maybe, historically, if women had been given more space and encouraged in their scientific pursuits the world would be a different place.

I agree with you, Silver, but it seems to be global, even in 1st world countries.

Quote
Women In Science, Technology, Engineering, And Mathematics (STEM)
Women Are Scarce in Scientific Research and Development
Averaged across regions, women accounted for less than a third (28.8%) of those employed in scientific research and development (R&D) across the world in 2014

Central Asia (47.2%), Latin American and the Caribbean (44.7%), Central and Eastern Europe (39.6%), and the Arab States (39.9%) are regions in which women represent over a third of the R&D workforce.
http://www.catalyst.org/knowledge/women-science-technology-engineering-and-mathematics-stem

But it looks like Latin America is one of the better regions!

We were told, a few years ago, that girls were exceeding boys in results iin secondary science education but few follow it up into tertiary education outside of the medical fields. We also had the problem here, when we generated many more universities by allowing colleges to convert, with a concentration on the service industries, politics, humanities and other non-scientific fields. Several unis closed their labs and dropped expensive sci-tech courses for cheaper, paper based, ones. Certain political decisions that almost closed British jnfustry did not help.

So, with less funding and fewer uni places and job opportunities the bias seemed to move back to men.

I am never sure whether simple change in priorities with maturity, apathy in fighting "the system" or what else causes the girls to drop out of the race early. Is it sexist of me to say that I can see the attraction of the medical field to women, and that science and technological research requires, as well as good methodolgy - which I feel is a more female trait - also a sense of play - perhaps more of a male inclination? Certainly the female engineers we had in the development dept at my last job got very short with us blokes and our jokes and tricks - but well all contributed about equally. Though the men were more liable to make moves "out of the box", work on inspiration and intuition, "What if . . .", and find the fit with theory later.
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xSilverPhinx

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Re: Women in science and technology
« Reply #6 on: April 01, 2018, 10:45:46 PM »
I am never sure whether simple change in priorities with maturity, apathy in fighting "the system" or what else causes the girls to drop out of the race early.

'simple change in priorities with maturity'

Maybe. I think when children come along it might change things for a lot of people. Maybe less for new fathers than it does for new mothers who usually take on the role of primary caretaker.

'apathy in fighting "the system"'

I don't think there's a difference between men and women when it comes to apathy and fighting the system. Women can be just as driven, although probably in many cases not as respected or heard. There are, in general, double standards judging assertive men and assertive women.


Quote
Is it sexist of me to say that I can see the attraction of the medical field to women, and that science and technological research requires, as well as good methodolgy - which I feel is a more female trait - also a sense of play - perhaps more of a male inclination? Certainly the female engineers we had in the development dept at my last job got very short with us blokes and our jokes and tricks - but well all contributed about equally. Though the men were more liable to make moves "out of the box", work on inspiration and intuition, "What if . . .", and find the fit with theory later.

I think there's the main problem, it's the preconceived notions of what types jobs are better suited to men and women. I don't feel having a good methodology is necessarily a female trait. I know quite a few men -- who are a bit controlling -- who have this characteristic. Could it be that such a thing stems from being a more controlling or domineering type instead?

A sense of play is more of a male inclination? :notsure: Really? :grin: Not the way I see it.  :smileshake: Some women might not like some of the jokes that men make for their content or the pranks they play on others but that doesn't mean that we in general don't like jokes. We just play differently.

Just a small derail: Why is there even play in the first place? If there is a evolutionary explanation for it, could it be a prep for real life events? Dogs play fight and hunt, for instance. If men in general are the ones who go to war and on raids then it would make some sense that boys' play is more rough-and-tumble than girls', and hones skills such as muscle coordination. Team sports favour cooperation. And etc.

As for men following their intuition and doing things outside the box more than women in the field, I wonder if this is a case of an assertive, outspoken women being seen as basically a bitch by many, and so women tend to tone it down a little?

I'm just a student of the game that they taught me.


Dave

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Re: Women in science and technology
« Reply #7 on: April 02, 2018, 09:06:00 AM »
^

Hmm, seems that I suffer stereotypitis as much as the next! My memory of work certainly seems to contsin more physical examples of humour - in a "physics" environment. But yes, there does tend to be some difference in humour and play type between genders when applied to others in the same gender/peer group - boys play rougher?
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xSilverPhinx

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Re: Women in science and technology
« Reply #8 on: April 02, 2018, 01:00:43 PM »
^

Hmm, seems that I suffer stereotypitis as much as the next! My memory of work certainly seems to contsin more physical examples of humour - in a "physics" environment. But yes, there does tend to be some difference in humour and play type between genders when applied to others in the same gender/peer group - boys play rougher?

From my perspective the type of pranks boys play on each other border on bullying (pulling the chair out from under a person, pushing others etc.), but they say it isn't so and if the victim doesn't feel that way then...  :shrug:

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Dave

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Re: Women in science and technology
« Reply #9 on: April 20, 2018, 03:50:10 PM »
I think the subject of this talk has been on before, but I really wanted to introduce someone new to me, Poppy Crum, Chief Scientist at the Dolby Laboratories. From what I have seen she is well into perception (particularly audio perception) and technology -

https://youtu.be/SYS7Q39Mkms

and a keen advocate against gender bias in science.

https://youtu.be/TSUTkOJ0q1Q

She is also going against the grain in pushing for more personal data, rather than less, being available for research - but with safeguards. That was a brief bit on BBC's "Inside Science" (not yet available) , can't find that TED talk yet. She also mentioned emotion sensors, some working from things like changes in CO2 content in auditoriums etc.

But, another woman out there in front.
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Icarus

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Re: Women in science and technology
« Reply #10 on: April 20, 2018, 08:56:20 PM »
Not in the same league as Ms. Crum but my hat is tipped to the steely cool female pilot of the Southwest Airlines plane that blew an engine and damaged the air frame. She managed to get the plane safely on the ground without further threat to the safety of the occupants. 

Tank

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Re: Women in science and technology
« Reply #11 on: April 21, 2018, 10:07:17 AM »
Not in the same league as Ms. Crum but my hat is tipped to the steely cool female pilot of the Southwest Airlines plane that blew an engine and damaged the air frame. She managed to get the plane safely on the ground without further threat to the safety of the occupants.
It's what she's trained and paid for. She did a good job.
If religions were TV channels atheism is turning the TV off.
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Remember, your inability to grasp science is not a valid argument against it.

Dave

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Re: Women in science and technology
« Reply #12 on: April 21, 2018, 11:34:22 AM »
Not in the same league as Ms. Crum but my hat is tipped to the steely cool female pilot of the Southwest Airlines plane that blew an engine and damaged the air frame. She managed to get the plane safely on the ground without further threat to the safety of the occupants.
It's what she's trained and paid for. She did a good job.
It also shows that women can cope competently with severe emergencies without having a fit of the vapours. I did not know that it was a female pilot until Icarus' post.
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Icarus

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Re: Women in science and technology
« Reply #13 on: June 17, 2018, 10:18:38 PM »
Here is another ultra bright lady.  Is it OK to describe a PHD physicist as a bright lady. I suspect that she is more than that. https://www.quantamagazine.org/the-physics-of-glass-opens-a-window-into-biology-20180611/

Dave

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Re: Women in science and technology
« Reply #14 on: June 17, 2018, 10:36:34 PM »
Here is another ultra bright lady.  Is it OK to describe a PHD physicist as a bright lady. I suspect that she is more than that. https://www.quantamagazine.org/the-physics-of-glass-opens-a-window-into-biology-20180611/

Yes, clever but of association there, I love an open mind thst xan make lesps.

I will also offer Lisa Randall.

Quote
In 2004, Lisa was recognized as the most cited theoretical physicist in the world with about 10,000 citations on her work
https://www.aps.org/careers/physicists/profiles/lrandall.cfm

https://youtu.be/jGi6coLERkk

For some reason her name surfaced in my mind as I read the first article. She was being held back in her career because of her gender and despite her citations way back.
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