The Gender Bias Rears its Face #ESOMAR #MRX

And now it’s time to check on the gender ratio of presentations at ESOMAR, a little task I try to do at every conference I attend. Since I am not an expert in first names around the world, I’ve only inferred gender from names where I am fairly confident that it represents a man or a women.

English: Amy Blackman, manager of , at Work It...

For all the speaker/author names listed in the ESOMAR programme, 42 were for women and 60 were for men.  Thus, out of 102 names I could infer gender from, 41% were for women. That is definitely a bias towards male presenters, certainly not as bad as it has been in decades past, but a bias nonetheless.

The usual suspects include:

  • Ladies, did you submit a proposal? If not, WHY NOT? Your ideas are as just as good as anyone else’s. If you don’t submit, you will not be chosen. Get in the game and make your voice heard!
  • Ladies, did you make your proposal sound as confident as possible? Other presenters are certain that their idea is the most astonishingly new and innovative idea out there. Even if you think your idea is old and boring, you need to present it with as much confidence as you possibly can. THAT’s how your proposal will be chosen.
  • And of course, maybe the conference committee was biased towards proposals from men? Very likely not, but it’s always possible. Reasons we don’t like are still reasons to think about.
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