Thursday, August 12, 2010

Gender: Redressing Gender Balance?

When the topic of historic imbalances is raised it's a hot issue. Just changing the laws and rules to fix 'future' discrimination may not be enough. Whether we should go and correct past mistakes, or at least compensate for them, leads to heated debate.

When redressing is in the cards the trick is to do something useful. Lip service serves no one. Band-aid measures don't do much either. Even the best ideas with the most laudable of intentions may not work as expected either.  Which means any initiatives to redress a past imbalance must receive scrutiny.

Here's some scrutiny on gender bias in the sciences. How it works and some idea of how it could be fixed. An entirely positive approach. Or something. by The Accidental Mathematician covers how hiring of research chairs is done. Whether the answer is a more open process or legislation one thing is for certain. We have a long way to go.

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