Need of women Organizers for Conferences
How to cite this article: Rao S. Need of women organizers for conferences. Indian J Cardiovasc Dis Women 2023;8:1-2.
Women’s empowerment is a critical concern for long-term development. While several nations accomplished gender equity in primary education, there is still a substantial gender difference in higher education. Women are increasingly earning higher degrees from institutions, yet, they still make up a terribly small percentage of the women scientists in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM).
Women are notably outnumbered at senior levels in STEM fields, which have drawn attention to gender disparities in these fields.[2,3] In academia, this so-called “leaky pipeline” effect is frequently very noticeable. It is debatable if this is an artifact of demographic inertia (senior positions represent prior gender ratios). The findings suggest that inertia may not be the sole cause as there is a disproportionately low representation of women in key activities promoting scientific career advancement such as obtaining distinguished grants,[5,6] representing as corresponding author on peer-reviewed papers,[7,8] patenting scientific developments,[9,10] and actively engaging in international conference sessions.[8,9]
The significance of attending conferences and meetings is well-acknowledged by the scientific community. It is important for professional development, networking, and visibility enhancement in addition to feedback and work improvement.[10,11] Conferences enhance possibilities to improve a scientific reputation as well as a social reputation in the scientific community, according to Hinsley’s work.
In academic conferences, gender equality needs to be a basic necessity. However, statistics show that there is a discrepancy in the percentage of women speakers,[8,12,13] a difference in presentation times by gender,[14-16] or a disparity in the proportion of women organizing committees. According to Schroeder et al., a significant percentage of women than males turn down invitations, which contributes to the underrepresentation of women.
The reasons for gender inequalities in other occupations are numerous and varied. Conference planners could try to entice well-known academics, doctors, and people in prominent leadership roles to speak at their event. As a proportion, men predominate in these roles, which contribute to an availability bias. Women may be less likely to offer to speak at conferences because they are more accustomed to public speaking, find it harder to find time to attend conferences, or even because they feel that there was a perceived gender imbalance at previous conferences.
Women in Cardiology and Related Sciences (WINCARS) association is a signature initiative of women cardiologists which serve as a catalyst to bring a change in the cardiac health of women. The mission of this association is to create a common platform globally to increase women’s heart health awareness such as WIN in western countries and the Women’s Heart Foundation in European countries.
This forum is designed to address the health issues of women through its strong association with national and international women leaders. We are continuously doing meets, webinars, quarterly conferences, CMEs, and free camps to increase awareness in every step of women cardiac medicine. Our (Women Cardiac Care) conference held annually on eve of World Women’s day is our initiative to interact and collaborate globally beyond borders with dignitaries to enhance knowledge by sharing vital heart health information for the better health of women globally. This association continuously encourages women to involve and conduct international and national conferences as an organizers, speakers, panelists, and chairpersons. WINCARS has emerged as important leadership, career development, and advocacy forum for female cardiologists.
When gender appears on the scene, there is a very distinct prejudice in STEM. The Matilda effect refers to the circumstance where men claim success for an invention that was invented by a woman. The Matilda effect is still at work, and as a society, we must act swiftly to solve it to ensure that every woman in STEM is given credit when it is due. This will inspire more and more women to pursue and succeed in the area. We all women should work together to make gender biases not apply to “STEM” in the coming future.
- She Figures 2015: Gender in Research and Innovation. Statistics and Indicators; 2015 Available from: https://www.ec.europa.eu/research/swafs/pdf/pub_gender_equality/she_figures_2015-leaflet-web.pdf [Last accessed on 2018 Dec 14]
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- Addressing the Underrepresentation of Women in Mathematics Conferences. arXiv preprint arXiv: United States: Cornell University.