EppsNet Archive: Research

Women in STEM: It’s Ambiguous but You’re Still Wrong

The Dartmouth student newspaper reports on a study finding that gender affects an individual’s perception of women’s anxiety in STEM disciplines. Men are more likely than women to attribute this anxiety and self-doubt to internal factors, while women usually attribute such emotions to external factors. Participants in the study read one story, among a selection, about an undergraduate woman taking a STEM class. In the stories, based on the experiences of actual undergraduate women in STEM, the female main character expressed having anxiety or self-doubt. It was ambiguous whether the instructor in the stories harbored any biases against women. According to research team leader Mary Flanagan, “Women identify the problem as something that is familiar and men identify the problem as something that is a particular student’s problem. Men are not seeing the systemic biases as much as the women are. That is something that we need to address in deeper… Read more →

Baldness vs. Malaria

Why is there so much more research done on baldness than on malaria? Because rich people go bald, and they don’t die of malaria. — Bill Gates Read more →

The Surprising Benefits of Nonconformity

New research finds that under certain circumstances, people wearing unconventional attire are perceived as having higher status and greater competence. — The Surprising Benefits of Nonconformity | MIT Sloan Management Review Read more →

The Important Problems of Your Field

Over on the other side of the dining hall was a chemistry table. I had worked with one of the fellows, Dave McCall . . . I went over and said, “Do you mind if I join you?” They can’t say no, so I started eating with them for a while. And I started asking, “What are the important problems of your field?” And after a week or so, “What important problems are you working on?” And after some more time I came in one day and said, “If what you are doing is not important, and if you don’t think it is going to lead to something important, why are you at Bell Labs working on it?” I wasn’t welcomed after that; I had to find somebody else to eat with! That was in the spring. In the fall, Dave McCall stopped me in the hall and said, “Hamming,… Read more →