Discrimination in hiring is a problem in several industries, including the ones that are supposed to be the most forward-thinking. In the sciences and tech industries in particular, women are grossly underrepresented. From the Los Angeles Times:
“It’s no secret that the tech industry has a shortage of women. What’s less well known is that the industry famous for its bravado about changing the world still lags decades behind other industries in its treatment of women, many of whom say they routinely confront sexism in the companies where they work and at the technology conferences they attend.
Many blame the industry’s growing gender gap on a “brogrammer” culture, a hybrid of “bro” and “programmer” that’s become a tongue-in-check name for engineers.
Prominent women such as Yahoo’s Marissa Mayer and Sandberg have proved they can scale to the top of the technology industry. Yet they are still the exception, not the rule.
Even though women outnumber men at the top schools and in the workforce and use the latest gadgets and apps in equal if not greater numbers, they still represent a small fraction of executives, entrepreneurs, investors and engineers.
The number of women studying computer science is shrinking and at many tech companies, only a tiny fraction of the engineers — 2% to 4% in some cases — are women.
One of Silicon Valley’s best-known venture capital firms, Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers, is being sued by a former partner, Ellen Pao, for sexual discrimination.”