I’ve slogged through enough reports from the National Academy of Sciences to know they’re often not shining examples of the scientific method. But — call me naïve — I never thought the academy was cynical enough to publish a political tract like “Beyond Bias and Barriers,” the new report on discrimination against female scientists and engineers.The actual reportisn't so funny.
For 30 years, the report says, women have earned at least 30 percent of the nation’s doctorates in social and behavioral sciences, and at least 20 percent of the doctorates in life sciences. Yet they appear among full professors in those fields at less than half those levels.Tierney tries to obscure this reality by summoning prejudice, distortion and a biased selection of anecdotal evidence. Like Larry Summers at Harvard before him, he thinks women are just not interested in science and engineering.
“Wherever you go, you will find females far less likely than males to see what is so fascinating about ohms, carburetors or quarks,” Hausman said. “Reinventing the curriculum will not make me more interested in learning how my dishwasher works.”Think of the enormous effort that goes into acquiring a doctorate in the hard sciences. So, more than half of these women are really not interested, or just lose interest before getting a faculty job after all that study? Yeah, right.