Centro de Estudios Andaluces (Andalusian Studies Center) has published a monograph authored by Milagros Sáinz on gender gaps and biases in the choice of STEM studies. Linked to the GESTEMI project, the publication explores the gender gap in study choices based on an analysis of enrollment data in different areas of knowledge in secondary education and higher education in Andalusia and Spain.
Milagros Sáinz highlights gender socialization among the main factors that influence the low presence of women in some STEM occupations. On the other hand, stereotypes about STEM disciplines create an unreal prototype of the people who study and work in these fields and their intellectual competences. Gender stereotypes and the consideration that men are more skilled for mathematics than women, together with the belief that STEM fields require high intellectual abilities, are related to the lower female presence in fields such as computer science, engineering and pure sciences.
Multiple interventions and programs have addressed these factors in recent years with the aim to dismantle stereotypes and encouraging the scientific and technological vocations of young women. In this publication, Milagros Sáinz reviews various initiatives developed both in the Spanish and the international contexts and analyzes the aspects they have in common. The monograph concludes with intervention proposals in which Milagros Sáinz emphasizes the need to improve knowledge transfer of research results and other evidence into the design and evaluation of public policies.