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Women’s experiences of racial microaggressions in STEMM workplaces and the importance of white allyship


Moore, Robyn and Nash, M, Women's experiences of racial microaggressions in STEMM workplaces and the importance of white allyship, International Journal of Gender, Science and Technology, 11, (3) pp. 1-20. ISSN 2040-0748 (2021) [Refereed Article]


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Copyright 2021 the authors. Licensed under Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Unported (CC BY 3.0)

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This article explores how gender interacts with race, ethnicity, and/or culture to structure the microaggressions experienced by visibly and culturally diverse women in Australian science, technology, engineering, mathematics, and medical (STEMM) organisations. Our aim is to disrupt the normative erasure of race from the workplace diversity context by focusing on these women’s experiences. We conducted 30 semi-structured interviews with women in academia, industry, and government who self-identify as women of colour or as culturally diverse. We use an intersectional lens to show that the challenges experienced by visibly and culturally diverse women cannot simply be subsumed under gender. Rather, race and gender intersect to create overlapping and interdependent systems of discrimination and disadvantage. These issues are largely unintelligible in STEMM fields as science is positioned as gender- and race-neutral. Consequently, despite their devastating impact, racial microaggressions may be invisible to members of the dominant racial group—those most likely to be the peers and managers of visibly and culturally diverse women. White managers and peers can act as allies to women of colour in STEMM by respecting and amplifying their concerns. Learning to recognise and confront racial microaggressions can help make science workplaces more inclusive of all scientists.

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
Keywords:women in STEMM, race, women of colour, whiteness, allyship, microaggressions
Research Division:Human Society
Research Group:Sociology
Research Field:Sociology of gender
Objective Division:Expanding Knowledge
Objective Group:Expanding knowledge
Objective Field:Expanding knowledge in human society
UTAS Author:Moore, Robyn (Dr Robyn Moore)
UTAS Author:Nash, M (Associate Professor Meredith Nash)
ID Code:143928
Year Published:2021
Deposited By:Office of the School of Social Sciences
Deposited On:2021-04-12
Last Modified:2021-11-10
Downloads:11 View Download Statistics

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