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Achieving Speaker Gender Equity at the American Society for Microbiology General Meeting.

Casadevall A - MBio (2015)

Bottom Line: The mechanisms associated with increased female participation were (i) making the Program Committee aware of gender statistics, (ii) increasing female representation among session convener teams, and (iii) direct instruction to try to avoid all-male sessions.Historically women have been underrepresented as speakers in many scientific meetings.This article describes concrete steps that were associated with achieving gender equity at a major meeting.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: Department of Molecular Microbiology and Immunology, Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore, Maryland, USA Acasade1@jhu.edu.

No MeSH data available.


Panel A shows the percentages of female speakers for five consecutive ASM GMs in the years 2011 to 2015. Panel B shows a plot of the percentage of session convener teams with a least one female convener versus the percentage of women speakers with the year next to the data point. Panel C shows the percentages of female speakers in sessions organized by all-male conveners and those organized by teams with at least one female convener. Panel D shows the percentages of all-male sessions among sessions organized by all-male convener teams and teams with at least one female convener. Data for the years 2011 to 2013 were published previously (7) and are shown here for comparison with those for the years 2014 and 2015.
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fig1: Panel A shows the percentages of female speakers for five consecutive ASM GMs in the years 2011 to 2015. Panel B shows a plot of the percentage of session convener teams with a least one female convener versus the percentage of women speakers with the year next to the data point. Panel C shows the percentages of female speakers in sessions organized by all-male conveners and those organized by teams with at least one female convener. Panel D shows the percentages of all-male sessions among sessions organized by all-male convener teams and teams with at least one female convener. Data for the years 2011 to 2013 were published previously (7) and are shown here for comparison with those for the years 2014 and 2015.

Mentions: Invitations to speak at major meetings are prized by scientists because they provide visibility and the ability to present their work efficiently to an audience of peers. Speaking invitations are used by faculty promotion and tenure committees as evidence of external recognition and thus can be critical to academic and professional advancement. Studies have shown that women’s participation at meetings is often underrepresented relative to their numbers (1, 2). In fact, women lag in a variety of academic areas despite increases in the percentage of women scientists (3–6). Given the importance of oral presentations at scientific meetings and academic advancement, a colleague and I recently analyzed the role of convener gender in symposia in two meetings from 2011 to 2013 and noted that the presence of at least one female convener was associated with a marked increase in female speaker participation and a reduction in the probability that the session was all male (7). This communication describes the effect of making that information known to the American Society for Microbiology (ASM) General Meeting (GM) Program Committee in the years 2014 and 2015 and discusses interventions that were associated with achieving gender parity in 2015 (Fig. 1).


Achieving Speaker Gender Equity at the American Society for Microbiology General Meeting.

Casadevall A - MBio (2015)

Panel A shows the percentages of female speakers for five consecutive ASM GMs in the years 2011 to 2015. Panel B shows a plot of the percentage of session convener teams with a least one female convener versus the percentage of women speakers with the year next to the data point. Panel C shows the percentages of female speakers in sessions organized by all-male conveners and those organized by teams with at least one female convener. Panel D shows the percentages of all-male sessions among sessions organized by all-male convener teams and teams with at least one female convener. Data for the years 2011 to 2013 were published previously (7) and are shown here for comparison with those for the years 2014 and 2015.
© Copyright Policy - open-access
Related In: Results  -  Collection

License
Show All Figures
getmorefigures.php?uid=PMC4526716&req=5

fig1: Panel A shows the percentages of female speakers for five consecutive ASM GMs in the years 2011 to 2015. Panel B shows a plot of the percentage of session convener teams with a least one female convener versus the percentage of women speakers with the year next to the data point. Panel C shows the percentages of female speakers in sessions organized by all-male conveners and those organized by teams with at least one female convener. Panel D shows the percentages of all-male sessions among sessions organized by all-male convener teams and teams with at least one female convener. Data for the years 2011 to 2013 were published previously (7) and are shown here for comparison with those for the years 2014 and 2015.
Mentions: Invitations to speak at major meetings are prized by scientists because they provide visibility and the ability to present their work efficiently to an audience of peers. Speaking invitations are used by faculty promotion and tenure committees as evidence of external recognition and thus can be critical to academic and professional advancement. Studies have shown that women’s participation at meetings is often underrepresented relative to their numbers (1, 2). In fact, women lag in a variety of academic areas despite increases in the percentage of women scientists (3–6). Given the importance of oral presentations at scientific meetings and academic advancement, a colleague and I recently analyzed the role of convener gender in symposia in two meetings from 2011 to 2013 and noted that the presence of at least one female convener was associated with a marked increase in female speaker participation and a reduction in the probability that the session was all male (7). This communication describes the effect of making that information known to the American Society for Microbiology (ASM) General Meeting (GM) Program Committee in the years 2014 and 2015 and discusses interventions that were associated with achieving gender parity in 2015 (Fig. 1).

Bottom Line: The mechanisms associated with increased female participation were (i) making the Program Committee aware of gender statistics, (ii) increasing female representation among session convener teams, and (iii) direct instruction to try to avoid all-male sessions.Historically women have been underrepresented as speakers in many scientific meetings.This article describes concrete steps that were associated with achieving gender equity at a major meeting.

View Article: PubMed Central - PubMed

Affiliation: Department of Molecular Microbiology and Immunology, Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore, Maryland, USA Acasade1@jhu.edu.

No MeSH data available.