Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Gender gap diminishing in Mathematics

I'm surprised our Operations Research blogging friend Laura of Punk Rock Operations Research has not brought this issue to our attention. Well let me oblige if I may. A blog article by Sharon Begley of Newsweek early last month shows that the math gender gap is not what it used to be in the past. The statistics bear out in a couple of studies that girls are reaching a parity with boys in the subject of mathematics. Yet Sharon explains in the article the there is still proof that the stereotype still exists. One notable reason is the lack of females who have won the noted Fields Medal. I was surprised to hear that there has not been one female to win the award.

I am curious if this is true in the field of Operations Research. I personally know many women in the field of Operations Research. I know from my experience in Engineering that there is less women in the field but it definitely seems to be trending positive. I'm not sure what the future holds for Operations Research but I for one welcome our female friends.

1 comment:

Laura said...

I actually tweeted about this! (It's been a busy summer, I do what I can). This is great news, of course. I have noticed that there are more women in OR and math than in many engineering disciplines (I have a IE/SysE background). I'm not sure what the current trend is in engineering. I had heard that the female undergraduate enrollment leveled off but recently heard more optimistic news.