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Astronomy

Under-representation at Astronomy Conferences

By Keith Cowing
March 16, 2014
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Studying Gender in Conference Talks: Data From 223rd American Astronomical Society Meeting
“The most significant result from this study is that while the gender ratio of speakers very closely mirrors that of conference attendees, women are under-represented in the question-asker category. We interpret this to be an age-effect, as senior scientists may be more likely to ask questions, and are more commonly men. A strong dependence on the gender of session chairs is found, whereby women ask disproportionately fewer questions in sessions chaired by men. While our results point to laudable progress in gender-balanced speaker selection, we believe future surveys of this kind would help ensure that collaboration at such meetings is as inclusive as possible.”

NASA Watch founder, Explorers Club Fellow, ex-NASA, Away Teams, Journalist, Space & Astrobiology, Lapsed climber.