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General Physics Colloquium - Meg Urry: 'Why Physics Is Still a Boys’ Club'

Info about event


Friday 13 November 2015,  at 15:00 - 16:00




General Physics Colloquium


Title: Why Physics Is Still a Boys’ Club

Speaker: Meg Urry


Some 40 years after gender discrimination laws were passed in many developed countries, the physics profession remains dominated by white male scientists. The numbers of women and people of color lag far behind their representation in the population. Their absence means that the physics enterprise is not as strong as it could be—not only are we failing to capitalize on the available talent, but greater diversity is known to lead to greater innovation. Who knows where physics would lead were participation broadened? Moreover, the lack of gender equity is neither a mysterious nor intractable problem. Nearly all the criteria we use to judge excellence have been shown to be biased against women. I review the research on bias and suggest steps we can take to reduce it. Finally, given recent, highly visible cases of sexual harassment of students by professors, I talk about how to recognize and eliminate unprofessional behavior, so that the workplace allows everyone to thrive. 


Coffee and cake will be served at 2.30 pm