Yea, well, these fabulous feminist types have been forever pointing out that numbers matter. Participation rates in board rooms and on panels do count. It’s about being welcomed to take part in shaping the social agenda. Often we can see discrimination in these numbers and ratios, see #allmalepanel #manel. Needless to say, women are as good as men can be. [Updated 19 April 2017 16:00]
The message we get from this conference however looks rather dim indeed. I had a quick look at the Cycle City Conference participation.
The quick stats (full spreadsheet attached at the end)
- 13 sessions with multiple speakers have 5 with no woman participant at all
- Only one session has gender equity (and only if we exclude the chair), session title “Wellbeing, diversity and inclusion”
- 11 places (14%) are unannounced as yet, however if we fill these with the current gender rate the overall role ascription is a whopping 83% men and a meagre 17% women
- 7 men have duplicate roles (1 for women) – but if it really is about the status of participating (quality not quantity), at least these could have been filled with women speakers
Thanks to the women who (are let to) take part. A solidarity shout-out to (in alphabetical order)
- Isabelle Clement
- Rosslyn Colderley
- Kersten England
- Susan Hinchcliffe
- Liz Hunter
- Sensei Mumtaz
- Adele Proctor
- Dr Louise Reardon
- Antonia Roberts
- Cllr Val Slater
- Jenny Wiles
I have to ask: what are the organisers thinking to achieve here in Bradford? Can we discuss how to run events more equitable in gender terms at least? Please. Discussing the political flavour of the month “getting more women cycling” is not done without women.
Here it is again. Women through their role in society bring a special standpoint and viewpoint to any table. Shutting that contribution out we create an incomplete picture of the world. It really is time for change on these very simple things like participation rates. There a plenty of women speakers. Able, eager and totally ace women. I am grateful to know some of them, and there are many more still.
What to do.
Well, the answer would be a boycott. And as the word suggests that is for the boys to do. Joking aside, folks – we do need men to lead the way out of numerical discrimination by stepping out and making way for active women participants.
Please talk to the organisers and point out this “slight” “oversight” of 83 to 17.
Data from http://www.landor.co.uk/cyclecitybradford/programme.php accessed 19 April 2017 12:00