March 2, 2015
Today’s link comes from Tracey Lein of the Los Angeles Times, who offers brief case studies of talented women who worked in the tech industry, got tired of being discriminated against, and ultimately left the field altogether. This is an oft repeated story, and one that persists despite efforts of some of the world’s largest and most successful technology giants.
“A Harvard Business Review study from 2008 found that as many as 50% of women working in science, engineering and technology will, over time, leave because of hostile work environments. The reasons are varied. According to the Harvard study, they include a “hostile” male culture, a sense of isolation and lack of a clear career path. An updated study in 2014 found the reasons hadn’t significantly changed.”
As Lein notes, “So far, no company has found a solution for retaining women.”
We can work at eliminating biases against women in the educational system, and we can work at creating more equitable and diverse hiring processes, but if we can’t keep women in positions once they win them, then we have failed and are all the poorer for women’s absence. And that is true for any field, not just science and technology.
When will this change, and what can we do to help?