#SmashingStereotypes - our take!
Who do you think of when you picture a scientist?
Despite an increase in the enrolment of women in STEM higher education courses women still only account for 29% of the STEM workforce. There are many reasons for this, including a lack of representation for girls in school. For example, only 25% of adults depicted in scientific education materials in 2016 were women. When this is combined with stereotypes and gender bias this can discourage girls from pursuing STEM roles. During a catch-up with our Digital Marketing Lead and member of Croda’s ED&I committee, Emma Down, she recommended a powerful documentary ‘Picture a Scientist’. This is an eye-opening film that highlights the historical barriers faced by women in STEM and the new chapter being forged by women in research.
As part of British Science Week, BSA are aiming to smash stereotypes through interviewing a diverse range of scientists who lie outside the typical stereotype of someone wearing a lab coat and goggles. Check out their profiles here.
Encouraging diversity at Croda
Here at Croda our STEM programme is working to bring STEM to schools, both showing how exciting science can be and that scientists don’t always look like Einstein! If you would like to learn more about our STEM outreach programme read our blog here.
Furthermore, as part of Croda’s People Positive commitment we directly contribute to the United Nations Sustainable Development Goal 5.5 (Gender Equality). We continue to measure progress against our target of achieving gender balance across our leadership roles by 2030. We are pleased to report that the number of women in leadership positions has increased by 5.7 percentage points since the 2019 baseline figure, with 38.2% of leadership roles now filled by women. The appointment of a new female CFO, Louisa Burdett, will move the gender balance of the Board in 2023 to 55% female representation and our Executive Committee to 33%. 2022 also saw a 48% net increase in the number of female process operators (excluding leavers as part of the PTIC divestment) and participation in our prestigious senior leadership programmes has been gender balanced, important steps in helping us to achieve our 2030 target.
If you are looking for resources or activities to engage this British Science Week, a host of resources for people of all ages can be found here. We hope that you enjoy following our Women in STEM series and that the next time you’re asked to picture a scientist, you challenge yourself to smash the stereotype too!