Analysis & Opinions - Scientific American

Confronting Sexual Harassment in Science

| Oct. 27, 2017

It's not just movie moguls and politicians; the problem is rampant in STEM fields as well. But recent moves by major organizations could mark a sea change in addressing this entrenched, degrading behavior.

If anyone thought scientists were somehow different from ordinary people—nobler, more ethical, more pure—then events over the past two years have been a sharp wake-up call. As with just about any area of human endeavor where men hold the lion's share of power, the world of science and technology is plagued by sexual harassment. Women in STEM fields have long known this, of course. But just as in Hollywood, where the predatory behavior of producer Harvey Weinstein was long whispered about but never discussed openly, the phenomenon of professors and researchers hitting on undergrads, grad students, postdocs and colleagues has mostly been hushed up—not only by victims fearing retaliation but also by institutions determined to keep their good name untarnished and their superstars happy....

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For Academic Citation: Russell, Cristine.“Confronting Sexual Harassment in Science.” Scientific American, October 27, 2017.