Science Interviews


Tue, 20th Jan 2015

Perceptions of science hold back women

Dr Ellie Cosgrave, ScienceGrrl

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It’s a fact that fewer girls than boys pursue STEM careers (Science, WomenTechnology, Engineering and Maths). To date, researchers have come up with all kinds of explanations as to why this might be the case. These include inflexible working hours and a reluctance to enter the cut-throat competitiveness of certain fields. But now a report from Princeton University suggests it’s the idea of  ‘innate brilliance’ which contributes most to the disparity between the numbers of men and women in science subjects; in other words it may all be down to how women perceive a subject. To find out more, Kat Arney spoke to Ellie Cosgrave, an engineering researcher at UCL and founder of ‘Sciencegrrl’ - an organisation which aims to encourage girls into fields like maths and physics...

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Simple fact: women (at least in a civilised society) have more life choices than men, so fewer choose to do something as difficult and generally unrewarding as science. Where the rewards are greater, and the work less tedious, e.g. in medicine and especially veterinary medicine, there are generally equal numbers of male and female undergraduates, but even there, the pleasures of family life often prove more attractive than a career in the long term. alancalverd, Wed, 21st Jan 2015

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