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妇女和少数民族科学家和工程师
SJR: 0.468 SNIP: 0.671 CiteScore™: 1.65

ISSN 打印: 1072-8325
ISSN 在线: 1940-431X

妇女和少数民族科学家和工程师

DOI: 10.1615/JWomenMinorScienEng.2014006377
pages 35-53

FACTORS AND PERSPECTIVES INFLUENCING NANOTECHNOLOGY CAREER DEVELOPMENT: COMPARISON OF MALE AND FEMALE ACADEMIC NANOSCIENTISTS

Suzanne Gage Brainard
Center for Workforce Development, University of Washington, 101 Wilson Annex, Box 352135, Seattle, Washington 98195, USA
Ethan Allen
Pacific Resources for Education and Learning, 900 Fort Street Mall, Suite 1300, Honolulu, Hawaii 96813-3718, USA
Vivien Savath
Center for Workforce Development, University of Washington, 101 Wilson Annex, Box 352135, Seattle, Washington 98195, USA
Stephanie Cruz
Center for Workforce Development, University of Washington, 101 Wilson Annex, Box 352135, Seattle, Washington 98195, USA

ABSTRACT

Women continue to constitute an underrepresented, albeit, growing proportion of science and engineering faculty in the United States. Nanotechnology, an emerging science and technology field, has characteristics hypothesized to be more attractive to women. This qualitative study investigates gender differences in nanoscientists' career decisions to test this hypothesis. The study is designed as a grounded theory exercise involving semi-structured interviews with multiple rounds of coding. Our findings suggest that female nanoscientists report more mentoring, over broader spans of their education and careers, than male nanoscientists. Women reported more direct career guidance, support, and direction, and less informal support, than men. Second, women, more often than men, appear to pursue nanotechnology as a tool or means for furthering their research rather than out of interest in nanoscience/nanotech itself. In contrast, men seem to be drawn to nanoscale science and technology out of intrinsic interest in, or excitement about, the field. These findings suggest that nanotechnology workforce development would benefit from a gender-differentiated approach to recruitment.