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The impact of social stereotypes in STEM hiring

Research by London Business School explored how unconscious bias can influence employment evaluations in stereotypically male fields. The hypotheses was based on male perceivers because they are often the evaluators and decision-makers in STEM contexts.

In the studies, men reviewed an east-Asian American woman’s CV in the context of a STEM job application. The woman’s gender and race were both always clearly indicated in the material provided, but either her race or her gender was emphasised. The question was whether, despite both being visible, the added emphasis on one would shape men’s STEM employment evaluations.

Evidence was found that men rated the same east-Asian American woman as less skilled, less hireable, and offered her less pay when her gender rather than her race was highlighted for jobs in science- and technology-related positions.

We expect to explore these gender issues with Roffey Park at the upcoming Gatwick Diamond Skills Summit at Reigate, Surrey on 9 March.

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