Engineering Girls And Wikipedia Women On What She Said

This week Kris Abel introduces What She Said’s Christine Bentley, Sharon Caddy, and Kate Wheeler to…

“Girls Like To Read, Boys Like To Build” – that’s the insight gleaned from entrepreneur Debra Sterling as to why girls avoid educational toys that might inspire them to take up careers in engineering and architecture. Her answer is a new toy on the market called Goldieblox that turns instructions into a book, parts into characters, and building activities into problem-solving adventures.

After getting funding through Kickstarter, the toy is now in stores and proving to be a big success. The ad campaign, featuring little girls doing parodies of sexist rock songs, has become a phenomenon on its own.

Are girls born disinterested in building things or are societal roles to blame? I’d love to hear from parents what they have seen and think.

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It’s the fifth most-visited website online, a valuable resource for schools, and is used to provide answers for Siri, Google Now, and other personal assistant technologies, yet its men, not women who are creating Wikipedia’s content.

After a survey revealed that just 9% of Wiki editors were women, the company has worked hard to offer better access, fight internal biases, and encourage new users, but two years later that number is still just 13%.

Even Wikipedia’s new Executive Director Lila Tretikove admits that she’s never edited a Wikipedia page before, that she’s always been a “reader”.

We’ll talk about the problems this has caused, why Wikipedia thinks this has happened, and how our audience can get involved and help out.

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