Girls in blockchain?


#1

Hello there!
So I was checking out some stats regarding the engagement in bitcoin community by gender and found that 3,43% ( https://coin.dance/stats/gender) is only female.
Being a girl in who has been into tech since a very young age, I particularly find that it is hard to find other girls also involved and I wonder which could be the factors that keep the majority of us away from the (specifically) blockchain technologies? Is it the old stereotype of “cars for boys and dolls for girls”? “Computers for boys and make up for girls”? I’m curious, as we all know this is not a real condition and both can coexist clearly.
Is it the raw/non attractive look that these technologies have? The non cool stereotype of tech girl ? Or just the acceptance and naturalization of a comfortable social thought that some things are gender specific?
On the other hand, do you have some ideas to bring more female population into these new technologies?
I’d love to hear which are your thoughts!
x
Wan


#2

Hi Wan! Well, as one of the ten girls on this forum of 477, I can at least speak about my experience. There are only about 20% of women in the IT field in general. This is not a great number to start with as I believe that most people in the Blockchain tech/crypto space are either IT people or are a few degrees of separation from IT people (though this is changing).

I think those that are already involved in the Blockchain/crypto space need to spread the word and help others get involved in whatever capacity they can. (I have told all my girlfriends about crypto) I think men in the Blockchain space need to professionally mentor one women long term - plain and simple. Those women then need to pay it forward to other women. The work environment needs to support this type of mentorship and give women a chance to succeed in higher levels.

Imagine if Vitalik picked a computer science college grad (a girl who wants to be the very best in her field, has excellent inquisitive and logic skills and a hard work ethic) and had her follow him around. He would guide her on what to read/study, answer any questions that she had, look over her coding work and give her increasingly harder tasks to do. After three years who would you want to hire for a prominent Blockchain job? I bet she would make the cut.

Anyone else have any thoughts on this subject? I am open to hearing any ideas (positive or negative) about this subject.


#3

People do what they’re interested in. The vast majority of women simply aren’t as interested in engineering, economics, or development the way that men are.

If you walk into a yoga class which are typically 80%-90% women in my experience, it isn’t because men don’t know about yoga. It’s because it doesn’t fit with their interests. There’s nothing wrong with that.

Trying to get people to be more interested in something often results in people feigning interest to better fit in. When people feign interest, then they don’t want to do any real thinking about the subject. Then a dogma develops so that they can be agreeable and know things without thinking. That’s the genesis of politics.


#4

Interesting points guys, this is a very common topic here in Sweden. There are many initiatives here exposing young girls to technology, entrepreneurship etc. The whole idea is to make them at least try. That’s where the biggest problem is - girls often don’t even try because programming looks boring and “non-girly” to them. This approach seems to work, the percentage of females enrolling in engineering programmes at KTH in Stockholm is growing steadily.

I do agree with @Jepb100 female tech influencers are a big part of inspiring girls to learn about technology. For example the big YouTuber Simone Giertz has inpired many girls to join the tech field (she is Swedish, forgive me for advertising my country so much :sweden::gift_heart:). She has many young girl following her social media.

Of course, as you @Brent say I think there is no need to “push” anyone and we shouldn’t.


#5

As individual men we can do things to help. Learn about feminism, the history of patriarchy and a recognition we exist in a very patriarchical society. Even in politically progressive nations. Then make choices everyday in the industry according to what you learn. If you’re a dad or uncle or grandpa offer to sit down with girls and show them how to teach themselves to code. Make a game together. Make it cool and fun like it was for most of us guys who got started coding on our parents computers when we were 9 and 10 years old. Etc. Every bit helps.


#6

My daughter is only 4 right now but I am really looking forward to teaching her about subjects that historically would have been more male orientated . Subjects like coding or money.


#7

Nice, my daughter is 6. It’s an amazing privilege to be a part of their lives. <3


#8

Hi @Jepb100 glad to find another girl around here! :slightly_smiling_face: I do feel the mentoring idea would actually be a great chance not only to prepare girls on the blockchain field, but also to diminish the preconception of “girls things, boy things” and demystify the IT as one gender only field.
I guess such a good idea should be considered by the right open minded person to implement on next blockchain tech projects!
I appreciate your opinion :heart_decoration:


#9

Hey Brent! I know, there’s nothing wrong with the different interest, plus don’t think that pushing people is the key. I mostly refer to find what makes the average woman interest in things, like you say, yoga and not engineering, and what could we, the ones who are in this tech field, improve/implement to generate more interest in order to have a more rich, diverse community with different points of view from both genders.


#10

@bradyswenson @David_Wyness Guys! I love the approach you have to the topic! I believe that most important cultural education comes from home and family encouragement! The fact that you find the idea of ditching the traditionally gender oriented activities or topics to create a friendlier environment for them to learn without limits is literally inspiring.
As @ivan said, programming does not look girly for us, so my question would be, what could be a good plan to make it more girl friendly (? or have you seen any project oriented to this topic, like the one at KTH?
I appreciate a lot your opinions :heart_decoration:


#11

In my opinion, it is not about forcing anyone to do anything, rather making it a level playing field so that everyone has the freedom to make their own decision about what they want to do, based on interest.

This is an incredibly hard task in a world of conventions, financial reality, traditional educational systems and gender roles, but I feel like progress can only be made if we recognise that the problem exists. A lot of men, especially in technology, tend to fall into repeating mantras such as “People do what they are interested in” which does nothing but reinforce cultural stereotypes and keep activities siloed.

To make anything change a lot of big and small transformations are required, some are systemic and may take decades to evolve, for example education which from my experience in the UK is a broken system. Others are possible to affect right now, for example in Copenhagen we are setting up events for women to come and discuss blockchain, an entry point to ask questions and be involved.

While we all wish that everyone would choose things freely, there is no such thing as perfect information or complete freedom of choice right now.These kinds of events exist to correct the same market imperfections as a male only yoga group or a female only boxing class. They are an unfortunate requirement in this reality.


#12

My earlier post said nothing about “pushing” or “forcing” anyone. I don’t know why all the responses to it are trying to assure me that they don’t want to push or force anyone.


#13

@Brent I didn’t see anything about forcing or pushing either. I agree to some extent with your comments as well, I am glad you chimed into the conversation.


#14

In Slack channels, guys talk also guy things and use their words. So I don’t usually tell them I am a girl. They call me Dude, Sir etc. It’s fine with me .


#15

On top of the smaller numbers of women in tech, when you narrow it further to those that are risk-takers the number seems to shrink to a very small group. I believe this is a general difference between the sexes and have heard it described as “crossing the adaptive valley”, whereas men are more apt to risk their lifestyle to chase an opportunity, especially if it’s tied to improving status.
As much as I’d like to offer opportunities to women in my startup software business, it’s hard to find ones that are senior enough in this area. I can find plenty of boot-camp grads, but not many that have been involved in building and shipping a product. The ones with experience have great jobs and aren’t looking to take the risk on a startup, whereas I have no problem finding guys that will come on over. I’m by no stretch of the imagination a dude-bro and am not looking for clones of myself haha.
So I’m open to help, but it isn’t always easy as it sounds.


#16

Fascinating topic, great question and comments. It is nice to read about this global phenomenon of gender roles here at the Crypto Pub. Everyone’s contribution here is fantastic and has a positive element.
Personally I see the ‘cryptos’ as being an amazing and exciting field. It truly is. It would be nice to see the best minds getting involved, women and men.
One problem is that we as people, tend to act as we are expected to act. Gender roles are given early in our lives and continue throughout. It is very difficult to deviate from them.
Girls need to appreciate (be taught) that they can spend time doing girly things and also be involved in other fields that are not ‘perceived’ to be “cool”. Who dictates what is cool and what is not.
It is important to have a balance and if a girl/woman/anyone finds a tech subject such as cryptos interesting then they can strive to be the best in the world. Not follow the stereotype.
There are many amazing people, i.e. ‘scientists’ top of their chosen subject who are well rounded and very good at other things.
Today as chips are able to process crazy amounts of information, the computer has become like a canvas (painting) and a place where people/programmers can express themselves.
It would be good to see more and more great ideas in things like: programming/AI/blockchains and coming from great minds, women/men/whoever has them. Frustrating that they are capped because of gender role stereotypes.


#17

Need more women in Crypto Field for sure…just a matter of time…I am working on a Crypto
Crowd Funding project and we are looking for women to contribute. Let me know …


#18

@wan, I understand your concerns and thank you for sharing the statistics. I was also worried about gender inequality in the market, needed some stats, asked for that in another forum and was attacked by a bunch of girls who were there already and thought of me as a Marxist, who believes only boys should work and girls should stay at home and take care of the kids (which is not true, of course).

However, my understanding is that there are lots of girls involved in crypto, who actively trade and mine. But the number should be increased to change the sad statistics! How? By just sharing the idea of blockchain and cryptocurrencies being accessible for everyone, regardless of gender, social status, geo location, etc.

Maybe promoting the idea among the girls, saying that they have equal opportunities here (and in any other sphere)? I think this is a social question (like the gender inequality issue in the job market in general).


#19

In the USA there is a big push to expose kids to the sciences in STEAM (science, technology, engineering, and math) programs. These are programs that give kids the chance to have fun learning about things such as robotics and its inter-dependency on math. Many times this is a girls only exposure to the science, technology or engineering. It’s the exposure to different areas of study that is critical for someone to know if they are interested or not in something.


#20

@MSW this is a great start. I remember when I was a little girl I had a barbie doll washing machine that really washed my barbies clothes with soap and water. I LOVED that toy and I am sure I wondered how it worked. What we need to do is go further and make a barbie doll washing machine that little gitls actually build and wire. Then they can wash their barbies clothes to their hearts content if that is what they still want to do. Take the education out of the classroom is my point.