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[dupe] Why is Russia so good at encouraging women into tech? (bbc.com)
30 points by rusanu 65 days ago | hide | past | web | 21 comments | favorite




Yep ... only .com instead of .co.uk

Strange that bbc doesn't have some resolving setup for that ... dupes supposedly being bad for SEO and all ...


The article is somewhat ironic, in light of the fact that in comparison to Western Europe, Russia is a very sexist society. Gender stereotypes are extremely common here (one can safely express them with no fear of getting a reprimand from local PC officer), gender identity politics is non-existent, and feminism is ridiculed, mocked or considered weird by the majority of people I've met.


Not actually been - but from observations of Russians I've seen I'd also say that:

a) Intelligence is strongly valued in general, with women being no exception. There is no native faux-ironic 'im a math geek nurrrg so i have to be awkward because noone understands me' or 'look at the nerd what a dork' culture..

b) Russian women aren't afraid of being strong willed, and this is also valued

c) Russian women seem to have a stronger notion of 'womanhood' and 'sisterhood' - similarly 'adulthood' and 'solidarity' are more generally valued - so hiding behind or supporting immaturity and selfishly infighting is less dominant/accepted

d) The general cultural philosophy is (despite bad eggs as anywhere) a focus on personal excellence and service to community/society/nation, rather than a desire for personal gratification according to abstract self-selected individual preferences

e) People call out BS when they see it, and this is considered a good thing, rather than 'being rude' or 'disrespecting everyones right to their own opinion'

So while perhaps sexist jokes and activities are allowed in some areas, in other areas actually acting on them - or letting them get to you or not calling them out in others - is dishonourable, a personal 'cultural liability' (e.g. cause for being ostracised), and to be avoided.

Of course there are exceptions everywhere, and this is observation and generalization - not an absolute statement of fact, also put with a bit of an ideal spin to underscore the argument..


Interesting point, reminds of the issue Jordan Peterson (iirc) once posed on Scandinavia. It seems there certain gender stereotypes are very strong, e.g. extremely low percentage men as nurses and women as engineers etc. His point was that if you actively remove or forcefully "balance" all other factors, the only remaining factor is the biological difference between men and women. This will be therefore exaggerated and you end up with the exact opposite result from what you intended.

Not sure if is 100% correct, but an interesting point of view nonetheless. Perhaps in Russia it is a similar effect, reversed.


Maybe gender stereotypes and feminism have little or nothing to do with Women's economic choices. Maybe it's because Russia is generally poor and competitive; these measures are more predictive anywhere else.


I think I must be misunderstanding you...when you say the article is ironic, do you mean it is wrong?

To me it is the behavior of non-Russian societies behavior towards women that is ironic, acting as if there was this huge conspiracy from society to "keep women down", which I've always felt was utter nonsense but you dare not say such things in polite company, whereas according to this article, it is actually these do-gooders who think they are trying to help women who are actually the ones harming them!

That must be what you were thinking as well and I just misinterpreted you?


Ironic in a sense that "misogynist" Russian society is "better" at "encouraging women into tech" than enlightened Brave New World of the West.


> in comparison to Western Europe [in Russia] gender identity politics is non-existent, and feminism is ridiculed

In western society an especially smart, capable woman has the option to gain status/prestige by studying feminism. Perhaps in Russia they don't have that option - there's no high-profile X-studies program to aspire to - so they learn something like math and excel at that instead.


Because they have to?

" in Russia, even the very youngest were extremely focused on the fact that their future employment opportunities were more likely to be rooted in Stem subjects."

In the west, women/girls can choose what they want to do, rather than what they feel they have to do out of economic necessity.


Most of those girls were born not long after soviet union fall apart. Upcoming generation is similar to the rest of the world, all girls want to be models, lawyers or economists.


How do duplicates work? Just wondering which one should be considered duplicate. I am seeing that this was the first article submitted


I've worked with a number of eastern European female engineers and developers. Their math skills were excellent. They were educated during the soviet era and it appears that they were not encumbered with the educational sexism that we see in the states. Math, science, and technology were subjects to be explored not avoided.


Was just on the front page a few minutes ago

https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=14164600


Very interesting article , shows how young a persons interests develop.


That's an easy answer: Russia is now and has always been a Matriarchy.


The majority (if not 100%) of Russia's ruling oligarchy are men, but many laws are indeed biased in favor of women. Woman will likely receive less severe punishment for committing a crime than man does, the mandatory conscription into the military is applied to males only, etc.


> Woman will likely receive less severe punishment for committing a crime than man

Is there a country in the western world where this isn't the case?


Because Russia doesn't have a culture where money and food fall out of the sky and everyone is a winner.


No, because the attitude of "X field is for Y gender doesn't really exist". But people are as sexist as ever


How does that statement even make sense?

If sexism exists, and Russia is top-dollar chauvinist, why would that not transfer to the workplace?

Russian people objectify women perhaps more than in the West, but they don't treat them as sex objects in the way that demands they be good for nothing except sex. Which is what you find in the West and other parts of the world. They're fine with them being sex objects, but they're also fine with them going out and being people and getting paper.




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