Mind the Gender Gap: Changing Misconceptions about Gender, Leadership, and Occupational Segregation
- 377 Downloads
In August of 2017, Google Engineer James Damore (2017) sent out a 10-page memo to every Google employee, critiquing Google’s diversity initiatives. In it, he argued that it is not discrimination or bias, but rather inherent biological differences between women and men that lead to the gender gap in STEM fields. He argued that these biological differences make women inferior engineers, and he further claimed that efforts to reach equal gender representation are divisive, unfair, and cost Google both productivity and money. Although Google responded by firing Damore, internal messages show that the memo garnered support among many employees (Feinburg 2017). Google itself is currently under investigation for paying women in the company less than men for the same work (Conger 2017).
Damore is not alone in his beliefs. Despite greater approval of women working in a variety of industries, misconceptions about gender such as those expressed by Damore persist, both at the individual and...
- American Psychological Association. (2010). Publication manual of the American Psychological Association (6th ed.). Washington, DC: American Psychological Association.Google Scholar
- Barash, D. P., & Lipton, J. E. (2002). Gender gap: The biology of male-female differences. Piscataway, NJ: Transaction Publishers.Google Scholar
- Conger, K. (2017, August). Exclusive: Here's The full 10-page anti-diversity screed circulating internally at Google. Gizmodo. Retrieved from http://gizmodo.com/exclusive-heres-the-full-10-page-anti-diversity-screed-1797564320.
- Damore, J. (2017, July). Google’s ideological echo chamber. Retrieved from https://assets.documentcloud.org/documents/3914586/Googles-Ideological-Echo-Chamber.pdf.
- Eliot, L. (2010). Pink brain, blue brain. New York: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt.Google Scholar
- Farrell, W. (2005). Why men earn more: The startling truth behind the pay gap—And what women can do about it. New York: American Management Association.Google Scholar
- Feinburg, A. (2017). Internal messages show some Googlers supported fired engineers manifesto. Wired. Retrieved from https://www.wired.com/story/internal-messages-james-damore-google-memo/.Google Scholar
- Fine, C. (2011). Delusions of gender: How our minds, society, and neurosexism create difference. New York: Norton.Google Scholar
- Leaper, C., & Brown, C. S. (2017). Sexism in childhood and adolescence: Recent trends and advances in research. Child Development Perspectives. Advance online publication. https://doi.org/10.1111/cdep.12247.
- Pinker, S. (2009). The sexual paradox: Men, women and the real gender gap. New York: Scribner.Google Scholar