Recent news of the all-female space trip being canceled due to a lack of space suits that were specifically designed for women was a prime example of the basic gender differences that are overlooked daily. Itching for more? Check out Caroline Criado Perez's book, Invisible Women: Data Bias in a World Designed for Men. An article in Science News covered the release and says that from "city infrastructure to car safety," the way that our world is designed is intended for men, leaving out half the population. The author contends that the only way to right these wrongs is by putting women in charge -- at the very top. "Only by making women visible in government decisions, medical research and infrastructure planning will society fully support women, Criado Perez argues, and that requires asking women, including women and electing women. 'When women are involved in decision-making, in research, in knowledge production,' Criado Perez writes, 'women do not get forgotten.'" (See IBM Debuts Tools to Make AI More Fair.)
Thought the #MeToo headlines were over? Think again. Forbes explains that the #MeToo "backlash after speaking up" is only just beginning. While women were applauded for being courageous enough to out their harassers and abusers, that doesn't mean there weren't repercussions for victims to face after the fact. "Once you report bad behavior of any kind, women are often shunned and blackballed," the article states. "You are pegged as a whistleblower, a nuisance, a troublemaker -- the squeaky wheel that will never be oiled again." Those who have spoken up have sometimes been targeted and threatened, which is in sharp contrast to many of the accused men, who have since been able to move on with their lives by taking on new jobs. (See WiCipedia: Terrible People, #MeToo Venting & Magic Mike, Here We Come!)
We've all heard of imposter syndrome -- that pit-in-your-stomach feeling that you're not good enough for whatever it is that you're doing and that others will see through the veil of deception soon enough. One engineer has made it her mission to help other women overcome imposter syndrome and fear of failure, Silicon Angle reports. Pratima Rao Gluckman, author of Nevertheless, She Persisted: True Stories of Women in Tech, has found herself connecting with girls and women all over the world since her book launched, and has specifically focused on the all-too-pervasive issue of imposter syndrome. Gluckman found that the issues began far before adulthood, and saw it firsthand in her work with high school girls: "They were doing all these amazing things, and I thought, 'Oh my god, they're... confident women,' but they were not. And it was because they felt that there was too much to lose. They didn't want to take risks. They didn't want to fail. And it was that imposter syndrome coming back, so that conditioning happens way before [women enter the workplace]." (See WiCipedia: Risk Taking, Imposter Syndrome & CES Double Standards.)
An angel investment consortium, Pipeline Angels, is setting out to "change the face of angel investing," Black Enterprise says. The fund is specifically intended to raise money for "women and non-binary femme social entrepreneurs," and currently hosts an angel investing boot camp, which has more than 300 graduates. "As a Black woman in tech, I was searching for a way to disrupt the perception of what tech superstars look like," said Lisha Bell, member of Pipeline Angels and product manager at Braintree. "When I discovered Pipeline Angels, I thought, 'This organization gets it,'" We look forward to seeing more innovative groups like this emerging in VC in the future. (See WiCipedia: Careers After Kids, Int'l Women's Day & Minority Founders and WiCipedia: Queen of Code, Female VCs & STEM Expectations.)
This week in our WiC roundup: Coding school teaches kids to help others with tech; '90s TV reigns supreme even in the everything-automated age; computer science programs may have more accountability soon; and more.