Design Science proudly recognizes that more than two-thirds of our employees are women, especially as we come to the end of a whirlwind Women’s History Month.
As a business, we know that value is genderless. As researchers, however, we understand that all people have different life experiences, and that some of these experiences have been influenced by gender. That is why we see it as our responsibility to ensure our studies represent the real user base and include equal representation of individuals of all genders and of diverse backgrounds more generally. On this last day of Women’s History Month, we invite you to take a moment to learn a little more about the importance of equal representation in data.
For example, did you know that women are more likely to be misdiagnosed? This is partly because historically, medical research tested symptoms of disease primarily in men. Caroline Criado Perez, a British feminist, activist, journalist, and author explores this data gap, and several others, in her book Invisible Women: Data Bias in a World Designed for Men. In the book, she uncovers several other consequences of electing the default man to represent the whole, including why there is almost always a longer line for the women’s restroom than for the men’s. (We won’t spoil that one; just know that the answer might surprise you!)
Too busy to read today? The podcast 99% Invisible recorded a great interview with Caroline where she discusses a few more interesting observations from her book.
You can find Invisible Women: Data Bias in a World Designed for Men wherever books are sold and listen to 99% Invisible’s Episode 363 – Invisible Women on Spotify, iTunes, RadioPublic or wherever you get your podcasts. Happy celebrating!