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K Dutt

UIID-AD: 3853


In recent years there has been a huge body of literature examining the underrepresentation of women in STEM fields. Causes cited range from stereotype threat and subconscious gender bias to social and environmental factors. Historically men have tended to dominate STEM fields, but in recent years women's participation has increased significantly. For example, in the earth, atmospheric, and ocean sciences, only 3% of the doctoral degrees in 1966 were awarded to women; that number increased to approximately 35% in 2006. Yet despite these increases women remain underrepresented in STEM faculty across the country. This chapter provides an overview of the institutional transformation experience of Columbia University's Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory over the period 2005-2012. The focus of these efforts has been the integration of diversity considerations into all academic decision-making processes, and bringing about a systemic change in institutional procedures. The results show an increase in women across all scientific ranks, with the most significant increase at the Doherty Scientist/Lamont Assistant Research Professor rank, up from 18% women in 2005 to 39% women in 2012. Many of the issues discussed in this chapter are not unique to LDEO but are common to other scientific institutions as well, suggesting that the LDEO experience could serve as a model for peer institutions facing similar problems.

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