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Jokes/Interweb Things Thread, BBC Viewpoint: More women needed in technology in Fun Stuff; Originally Posted by localzuk All it proves is that 2% of FTSE 100 companies are run by women... Did women ...
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    Quote Originally Posted by localzuk View Post
    All it proves is that 2% of FTSE 100 companies are run by women... Did women apply for all the posts when they came up last?
    Nobody asks that. They also don't query the qualifications/experience of any women that have applied. [There's a high chance it'll destroy their argument.]


    It could be as simple as A)Women are not applying for these jobs or B) The other people were better qualified to do it.


    I've yet to find someone who was turned down for a job and then claimed it was because they were a woman. I have, however, met people who whinge about not getting jobs because they're female, when they didn't even apply for it in the first place or they have no relevent experience or qualifications.


    Quote Originally Posted by Achandler View Post
    Maybe the political system should be targeted first though, because we have had 1 female prime minister EVER, so I would have to see our percentages for that job role.
    Are women applying for the role?

    It's hardly fair to say "we've only have 1 female prime minister EVER", if there has only ever been one woman who wanted to do it.
    Last edited by X-13; 15th October 2012 at 02:38 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Achandler View Post
    I gave examples of where there is more male/ female ratios, either more male or more female. I don't have access to the figures of the male/ female ratio at
    every level of every organisation. There may be more females in boardrooms in FTSE 350 companies, I don't know.
    Well OK. So some figures from a European Commission report into Gender equality :

    "Gender imbalance in decision-making positions is observed in various domains: politics, economics, science and research. However, the situation is worst in business management with much fewer women than men at all levels of business management. Many large companies still have no women on their boards and there are only few female executives. In 2010, one in three (34%) large companies in the EU and at least half of the companies surveyed in ten countries had men-only boards and another third (32%) of companies had just one female representative; in Europe's largest publicly quoted companies, on average, only one out of ten board members is a woman and so are only 3% of board chairpersons."


    Now, obviously I don't have the figures for every company and every level, but I'd be extremely surprised if the employee gender ratio at board level ran all the way through a company. 1 in 10?
    Clearly your view is that we have to positively discriminate and you won't accept that some people may disagree with it, and think that positive discrimination might not be a good thing. I have to agree with LosOjos here, I think I'll step away from discussing this with you, it seems it would be as productive as a does God exist or not argument between an atheist and a Christian.
    <sigh>. I accept people do not agree with me and I am quite capable of changing my mind when evidence suggests my view is wrong. I'm deeply sorry that I put my points in a way that has obviously damaged the rather sensitive sensibilities of a few posters here but yes, perhaps those with such delicate views who don't like them challenged are better off avoiding discussion. So, err, bye then.
    Maybe the political system should be targeted first though, because we have had 1 female prime minister EVER, so I would have to see our percentages for that job role. Once politics has changed, then politicians can start forcing others to follow suit if that is what has to happen.
    Maybe it should, it is certainly not immune. Female MP's number around 150 out of a possible 650, there are 5 in the cabinet out of 22. Do you think women are perhaps less political?
    Last edited by pcstru; 15th October 2012 at 02:54 PM.

  3. #18

    localzuk's Avatar
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    Another factor to take into account - I know of loads of women who had careers, got quite high, and then decided to have kids, and left their field to become a full-time mother. They didn't go back to it again, because they wanted to be with their kids. I can guarantee to you that some of the women working in your schools likely did this - we have at lease 2 here. They went for the jobs because of the flexibility in their hours allowing them to work a few hours a day early on with their kid, and gradually increase those hours as their kids age.

    Thing is, businesses could do this too - but many don't, as they have a business to run and profit to make. They need stability and continuity to ensure they don't end up going bust...

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    Quote Originally Posted by X-13 View Post
    Nobody asks that. They also don't query the qualifications/experience of any women that have applied. [There's a high chance it'll destroy their argument.]
    It is difficult to get that kind of data for women who have applied for top jobs at top companies. What we do know though is that in the humanities and arts (of which business is a part), women graduates outnumber men. In general women are 27% more likely to get a degree.

    HESA suggests numbers of business graduates are quite evenly split at first degree with a male bias going into postgraduate. Going from that to a 1 in 10 ratio at board level. I think it would be difficult to argue it's down to qualifications.

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    Quote Originally Posted by localzuk View Post
    Another factor to take into account - I know of loads of women who had careers, got quite high, and then decided to have kids, and left their field to become a full-time mother. They didn't go back to it again, because they wanted to be with their kids. I can guarantee to you that some of the women working in your schools likely did this - we have at lease 2 here. They went for the jobs because of the flexibility in their hours allowing them to work a few hours a day early on with their kid, and gradually increase those hours as their kids age.

    Thing is, businesses could do this too - but many don't, as they have a business to run and profit to make. They need stability and continuity to ensure they don't end up going bust...
    I couldn't agree more. Like it or not, women are the primary child-carers... and if couples split, children are more likely to live with Mum.

    As a Mum with a very highly paid job (equal footing with my accountant husband in the 1990s) in IT, once we had finally paid our way out of the 1990 housing slump, I decided that life was too short to carry on working silly hours and struggling with the children.

    There were two choices: 1) Get a nanny and carry on working, but hardly see the children... the eldest had started school, so day care wasn't needed for both, but school pick-up was real issue
    or 2) Get a life and career that worked better round them. I chose the latter.

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    Quote Originally Posted by localzuk View Post
    They went for the jobs because of the flexibility in their hours allowing them to work a few hours a day early on with their kid, and gradually increase those hours as their kids age.

    Thing is, businesses could do this too - but many don't, as they have a business to run and profit to make. They need stability and continuity to ensure they don't end up going bust...
    Hopefully this might be addressed by balancing the maternity/paternity leave situation, and also make it more common for men to take time off when their children are born. Then both sexes will be able to take 'career breaks' and companies will just have to get used to it.
    As for the positive discrimination thing - I dont agree with it at all, BUT it is important that we address the lack of expectation of females to be doing tech stuff. We women are still the exception in an IT world - I started as a test engineer and was the only female in the dept until my friend from college joined me. That was a long time ago but I do wonder if anything much has changed.
    By the time I had children, I was earning a lot of money as a tech headhunter, and we did discuss mrwITch staying at home with them but he couldnt really do it as tech was moving too fast.

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    Quote Originally Posted by witch View Post
    Hopefully this might be addressed by balancing the maternity/paternity leave situation, and also make it more common for men to take time off when their children are born. Then both sexes will be able to take 'career breaks' and companies will just have to get used to it.
    As for the positive discrimination thing - I dont agree with it at all, BUT it is important that we address the lack of expectation of females to be doing tech stuff. We women are still the exception in an IT world - I started as a test engineer and was the only female in the dept until my friend from college joined me. That was a long time ago but I do wonder if anything much has changed.
    By the time I had children, I was earning a lot of money as a tech headhunter, and we did discuss mrwITch staying at home with them but he couldnt really do it as tech was moving too fast.
    At university, there were roughly 20 women on the BSc Computing course I was on, out of about 300 of us. So, the issue exists at a much earlier stage than uni.

    I'd suggest it is partly down to that earlier cartoon - girls being shuffled into non-engineering playing etc... Same with science clubs and the like.

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    Quote Originally Posted by localzuk View Post
    Another factor to take into account - I know of loads of women who had careers, got quite high, and then decided to have kids, and left their field to become a full-time mother. They didn't go back to it again, because they wanted to be with their kids.
    I believe this is a genuine factor that does upset the balance - certainly from 50/50. What I would question is that it (choice by women) alone is responsible for the imbalance we see in companies.

    There is another discrimination that is rampant - pay. When I worked for a private sector company I was in a position where I knew what most people were earning. I constantly saw two people doing the same jobs with much the same experience, qualifications and length of service etc. Yet there was a definite skew in pay with female employees generally 10-20% worse off than their male peers.

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    Quote Originally Posted by localzuk View Post
    At university, there were roughly 20 women on the BSc Computing course I was on, out of about 300 of us. So, the issue exists at a much earlier stage than uni.

    I'd suggest it is partly down to that earlier cartoon - girls being shuffled into non-engineering playing etc... Same with science clubs and the like.
    Absolutely - you only have to go and look at all the pink and blue toys in Toys-r-us to see how the genders are segregated from an early age.
    There IS a difference between the way men and women think and I am not sure there will ever be as many women in tech as men, but I am sure there would be more if it was presented in a different way. Ditto there would be more male nannies, nurses and primary school teachers if things were done differently

    *mind you, there were 4 women on my course so maybe things have got a bit better!

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    Quote Originally Posted by witch View Post
    Absolutely - you only have to go and look at all the pink and blue toys in Toys-r-us to see how the genders are segregated from an early age.
    There IS a difference between the way men and women think and I am not sure there will ever be as many women in tech as men, but I am sure there would be more if it was presented in a different way. Ditto there would be more male nannies, nurses and primary school teachers if things were done differently

    *mind you, there were 4 women on my course so maybe things have got a bit better!
    I think it was the same uni too wasn't it? Lancaster?

    Thing is, I'm not ashamed to say that as a kid, I played with My Little Ponies as well as knex and lego etc... I had an upbringing based on what I wanted to do, rather than what I was supposed to do. But then, my dad is a teacher. My brother went a totally different way to me - he's a carer in a hospital.

    Some parents try to mould their child into everything they wish they were - just look at those stupid pageants and how they're taking a hold over here now.

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    I have just had a thought about this. My response to the headline would be "why?". What does it matter if women don't go into tech related jobs? What does it matter if men don't go into 'social' type jobs?

    Is it actually providing society with a problem?

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    Quote Originally Posted by localzuk View Post
    I have just had a thought about this. My response to the headline would be "why?". What does it matter if women don't go into tech related jobs? What does it matter if men don't go into 'social' type jobs?

    Is it actually providing society with a problem?
    The article addresses one aspect. Half the population is female. They have talent, intelligence and if men/women do 'think' differently, a particular and unique perspective to offer. If they are not represented in a sector, then we are potentially less competitive.

    Societally, role models are important. If girls don't see women doing particular jobs, then they less likely to be inspired to follow. The lack of men in primary teaching jobs is perhaps equally of concern from that perspective. Maybe it is contributory to boys falling behind academically at school.

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    Quote Originally Posted by localzuk View Post
    I think it was the same uni too wasn't it? Lancaster?.
    Nope, It was me at Lancaster @localzuk

    There weren't many women on my course in the early 1980s... 4 or 5 max.

    As for girls in Technology... it's said that girls seems to take a much greater interest in science in single sex schools.

    At my co-ed grammar school, back in the dark ages (I left in 1982), girls were positively discouraged from the sciences. We had to choose between O'Levels in Physics and Biology and girls were expected to choose Biology. We also had to choose 2 from Geography, History and Chemistry... girls were not expected to do Chemistry.

    Guess who did both Physics and Chemistry and did not do Biology or History? My head teacher was not a happy man. The three best Physicists in the class were all girls though and all the daughters of engineers. One is me, one went to work for Rolls Royce as an engineer and the third graduated from Cambridge in Maths and became a researcher.

    When I did A level, I wanted to do Maths and Physics and couldn't decide between Chemistry and Further Maths. I can still see the pain on my headmaster's face as he said "I'll put you down for Further Maths"

    I really, really hope that attitude has changed. My daughter went to a single sex grammar and was encouraged in her science interests.
    Last edited by elsiegee40; 15th October 2012 at 05:05 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by localzuk View Post
    At university, there were roughly 20 women on the BSc Computing course I was on, out of about 300 of us.
    At university in the UK I found the same, although in Canada the balance was rather better - not 50%, but maybe 25%-30% women in computer science classes. I got the impression the North American university system was quite flexible, allowing students to chop and change their classes rather more than we were used to in the UK. Everyone did a four year degree and seemed expected to do a minor and a major subject, to the extent that, in some cases, you could pretty much make up your own degree title as you went along. Women maybe had enough sense to go for major-with-a-minor-and-a-bit-of-something-else type degrees, with the minor or the bit-of-something-else being computer science or similar, it tended to be the men who stuck stubbornly with the I'm-a-Computer-Scientist-and-that's-what-I'm-sticking-with! all-or-nothing style degrees.

    The thing is, if fewer women are going to do jobs that require physical strength, and maybe avoid jobs that aren't ammenable to career breaks / flexible working around a family, you'd think that computing / IT / whatever would be pretty much the perfect career for them - in lots of cases you should be able to work remotely, from anywhere with Internet access, or shorter hours, etc. The lack of women in IT implies that the Information Soceity is doing it wrong, somewhere along the way - all the snazzy communication technology we've invented isn't being used in the correct way.

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    I read on some other site somewhere that another large contributor to the split is job environment. Apparently females are more likely to go for a job that pays a little less if it means a better work environment. They also tended to pick careers that also had better environments.

    When viewed in this light is it any wonder that not many want to work in the darkened Renholm Industries basement with little room for progression and less respect. The somewhat more respected careers of Lawyer or Doctor generally take place in much better environments (i.e. not under a desk on manky carpet), are well paid, have room for advancement and a longer career lifespan.

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