The reasons vary, but no doubt, the impact of the personal computer as an object which was placed preferably in a son’s room (this podcast is highly recommendable), along with a videogame industry which mainly focused on men (because they were the ones who owned computers) and in this war (maybe for some other reasons), women were rapidly expelled from the classrooms and consequently, from the industry.
What would happen if we could include them again? In a growing sector demanding professionals, having great men and women and a background of being much more diverse gender-wise, a cultural change would represent immediate economic growth which would be deeper and much more relevant in the long run.
The trend is promising, indicators are improving now. In Universidad Tecnológica Nacional (UTN), for instance, there has been positive evolution: “In 2007, 12% of women were registered. In 2016, 19%“. Initiatives such as Chicas en tecnología – and their amazing project called Programando un Mundo Mejor (PUMM) -, AdaIT or LinuxChix show increasingly more interest in eliminating the gap, and therefore, making the industry grow.
What can we do? Become aware, research data, investigate, collaborate and get involved (for example, becoming CET mentors), the same as we go about solving any other issue. A concrete example are the brilliant analyses on the last survey of Sysarmi’s salaries, carried out by Pablo Fernández, where he examines the difference in salaries between men and women following a clear, transparent and smart method to demonstrate that women are being paid less than men, which of course, puts them off when trying to get involved in technology.
What must be not done? Think that things will change alone, that everything will be worked out by magic throughout time. If things have been accomplished, it was because of fights from people who put and are putting their energy towards generating change. A very interesting report is the one by the company Randstad where it is proved that there is a discursive correctness which is not reflected in facts.
There are many wider sides to the gender problematic in our societies – directly linked to this editorial topic – which should be worked on: