Stop Quibbling over “Real” Techies, Scientists and Mathematicians

Woman raising profile In a recent post for WITsend, the Computer Weekly blog, Rebecca Thompson complained about something I have often noticed. When talking about women in traditionally male areas of IT and Science, I often hear both men and women say "she's not a real scientist or techie". I have seen female scientists on the telly criticised for going into science communication, and not "real science" whereas their male co-presenters are applauded for making such technical areas accessible to a wider audience and for "keeping it real". As explained by blogger Rebecca Thompson: "Irrespective of whether they climbed the ranks of developer or programmer jobs, the fact is these women work in technology. They have brought their skills, experience and ability to the technology industry. They should be applauded, not sneered at". The reasons behind these views, it seems, is that women are seen to operate on the "lighter" or more managerial sides of technology, working within the IT sphere in a portion of some wider business aims, such as in marketing and advertising or business consultancy, rather than working as code writers, developers or IT support technicians – professions that are seen as more stereotypically techie. Still, ladies we will get much further together, not by tearing each other down. 

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