Thursday, October 27, 2016

Marta Bunge short post on the international Category Theory meeting

I have asked several people to help with data and impressions on the gender inequality in Logic. I reckon that if we all do a little we can end up with lots of valuable information: on numbers, on ways of changing the status quo, on tips and tricks to survive and improve our environment.

Marta Bunge wrote

In response to a previous suggestion of yours, Valeria De Paiva, I have been perusing the proportion of women among the invited speakers in the International Category Theory Conferences (CT) since the year 2000, and came up with the following figures (Women/Total): CT 2000 (0/5), CT 2006 (1/5), CT 2007 (0/8), CT 2008 (1/7), CT 2009 (0/5), CT 2010 (1/6), CT 2011 (1/6), CT 2013 (2/6), CT 2014 (2/6), CT 2015 (3/6), CT 2016 (2/6), CT 2017 (0/6). In order to know whether this an adequate proportion of women invited speakers one would need the additional information of the total number of category theorists who deserve to be so invited and of how many among those are women. Before the year 2000 there was no invited speakers list at the International CT meetings, but some speakers were given an hour as opposed to half an hour. I have not done a search for these, as the data for most of them are no longer available. There is recently an article in the journal Nature about the presence of women in science and on how to improve what seems to be an unfair situation, which I believe. I hope that someone more qualified than I can do this since I believe it is important for our field. Without a shadow of a doubt I consider Andree C. Ehresmann as someone who has done a lot for our field - not just by continuing the work of Charles Ehresmann by publishing his Oeuvres Completes and continuing with the journal Cahiers de Topologie et Geometrie Differentielle (Categoriques), but by encouraging many researchers in our field - both men and women. She certainly deserves mention as a woman and a mathematician. I leave you with that. All the best.

I need to do some more with this information.

Saturday, October 22, 2016

Logic Colloquium, 1993-2016

It's time to take a look at the last type of ASL meeting: the Logic Colloquium. Here are the factors I'm considering:
  • Time span: I'm going back to 1993 for the very simple reason that that is the earliest meeting for which I can get a speaker list using Hofstra's level of access to the Bulletin of Symbolic Logic, where the meeting summaries are published.
  • Types of talks: I am considering all plenaries (except for Gödel lectures) and tutorials. I left the tutorials out of my analysis for the Annual Meetings because they haven't been an annual occurrence. They seem to happen each year at Logic Colloquia, so I didn't see a reason to exclude them.
  • Numbers v. proportions: As always, proportions!
And as always, let's start with a basic scatterplot with a regression line:

The equation of the regression line is
proportion = 0.003680(year) - 7.281694,
but once again, the R2 values are really low (0.1223 without adjustment, lower with). However, I got a nice surprise when I looked at the residuals. Usually, the years that are flagged as unusual are the years in which the proportion of female speakers is relatively high. This time, two of the flagged years were 2008 and 2011—the only years since 2006 with no female speakers—while the other was 2014, the only year in which the proportion of female speakers topped 20% (it was 30.8% that year).

Now let's compare the regression line to the LOWESS (locally weighted scatterplot smoothing) plot:

Of all the LOWESS plots I've done for different meetings, this one seems to be closest to linear, suggesting a relatively steady rate of improvement. On the other hand, it's consistently flatter than the others.

Summary: The proportion of female speakers is consistently low here—it's only topped 20% once—but there are far fewer years in which there have been no female speakers at all than in any of the other conference series and, in fact, these meetings have a higher average number of female speakers than any of the others. This may be in part because Logic Colloquium Program Committees have historically tended to invite more speakers than other Program Committees: there were between 13 and 29 invited speakers at each Logic Colloquium I looked at, while there were never more than 13 speakers at any of the other meetings in the years I studied. The more speakers you have, the less likely it is that none of them will be women, but the proportion of speaker who are women still isn't very high.

Next up: I'll look at the number of repeat invitations issued to women and to men in each of these conference series. Are the same women asked over and over again? Are women reinvited less often than men? Let's find out.

Wednesday, October 12, 2016

APA/ASL Meetings, 1998-2016

Sorry about the delay, everyone—it took me a while to learn how speakers are chosen for APA/ASL meetings. It's time for an analysis of how the representation of women among speakers at these conferences has changed over time. I'm considering the same factors as before:
  • Time span: My useful data only goes back to 1998, so that's where I'm starting. If people are interested, I can dig up reliable data going back farther. Please note that some of the meetings are listed as happening in a year when they didn't actually occur. Due to scheduling, sometimes there are two APA/ASL meetings in one year and none in the next; in those cases, I listed the second meeting as having occurred the next year. You'll notice that there's no data from 2013; I'll explain that soon.
  • Types of talks: I am considering every talk at an APA/ASL meeting except (1) the contributed talks and (2) the talks on education. This is a departure from my norm: for the Annual Meetings and the AMS/ASL meetings, I considered only plenaries. So why am I making this change?

    My goal has always been to consider the program committees' speaker selection. At the Annual Meetings and the AMS/ASL meetings, the program committee only selects the plenary speakers; while there have been some tutorials, I've chosen to look at the types of talks that occur regularly. At the APA/ASL meetings, the program committee is responsible for choosing the speakers for not only plenary talks but special sessions. The only exceptions are the sessions on education: the speakers for those are apparently chosen by one person and then approved by the committee, so I've left them out. There is no data from 2013 because the only speakers that year were in an education session.

  • Numbers v. proportions: Once again, I'm considering proportions. If I were to point out that that there were three female speakers in each of 2008 and 2009, it would give a very different impression from pointing out that 37.5% of the speakers in 2009 and 23.1% of the speakers in 2008 were women.
Before I even show you a regression plot, I'd like to point out one thing about the 18 meetings I considered:
  • Number with 0 women: 11
  • Number with 1-3 women: 7
This is the only set of meetings I've looked at so far where it's more usual to have a meeting with no invited female speakers than a meeting with any. Now here's the customary linear regression:
The equation of the regression line is
proportion = 0.007065(year) - 14.090829,
but, once again, don't read too much into this. The R2 values are too low to suggest that this model is a plausible one (0.08987 without adjustment, lower with). When I looked at the residuals, the years 2003, 2008, and 2009 were all flagged. Those were the only years between 1998 and 2010 in which any women at all spoke.

Looking at a LOWESS (locally weighted scatterplot smoothing) plot helps us understand the trends in this data more easily. The high proportion of women in 2003 is treated as a clear anomaly when considered in the context of the years surrounding it in which there was no female representation at all, and the proportion of women begins to rise slowly in about 2008.

Summary: This is the most consistently low representation of women I've seen in any ASL meeting series so far. The percentage of female speakers hasn't gone over 17% since 2009, and there have been no female speakers at 11 of the 18 meetings considered. While this does seem to be improving, that improvement is generally limited to having one female speaker each year (there hasn't been more than one at a meeting since 2009).

Next up: Logic Colloquium!

Friday, October 7, 2016

The Gender Pay Gap that...

wasn't? ....

 Look at this Freakonomics piece

I used to think Freaknomics was a good program. Now I don't think so, anymore.
I disagree with this podcast very much, but it's worth reading.

It's hard to get the numbers that show how much choosing 'temporal flexibility' is not a choice, really.

For a very different take, check 
The American Association of University Women (AAUW)'s presentation:

The Simple Truth about the Gender Pay Gap

 A "nice" quote from the AAUW presentation:

"While the pay gap has steadily narrowed over time, it is nowhere near being eliminated, and in recent years progress has actually stalled. In the 10 years between 2004 and 2014, the earnings ratio has barely budged, changing from 78 percent in 2013 to 79 percent in 2014—a change that is not significantly different."

More about whether it's a myth or not here
No, The Gender Pay Gap Isn't A Myth -- And Here's Why | Huffington Post .

So according to the number of occurrences in Google search page, the gender gap is a myth. I don't buy it. Do you?