Think about how much the existence of these role models obviously matters to you, and realise that nobody wants to take that away from _you_, they simply want to give it to other people as well. When I look at the field of programming, I don't see people like me. Things are getting better, but we still live in a world where if you aren't a white man then you have no examples to point to and say "look, I can do this!"
And you might say, "well, I never needed that", and that might be true - I obviously never needed it either - but appreciate that whether you needed it or not, you _had_ it, and a lot of other people do need it, whether white man or not. We all need role models to aspire to. Stop acting like other people getting the things you've always had is taking anything away from you.
Literally nobody is saying this. If people are reading "we should have more role models who aren't men" as "we should have fewer male role models" then that is _their_ problem, not a legitimate point which needs to be debated.
Practically speaking, how can anyone make more role models that satisfy some arbitrary appearance standard? The implication is that we have those role models because of their appearance and reject equally deserving ones of other appearances. Again that's absurd and offensive.
Realise that you're talking about human beings, not machines. Human beings are raised from birth in human society and do not make decisions like "what kind of things do I want to be interested in?" in a perfectly logical and informed manner.
When you come across popular figures in any area, if they look like you the immediate reaction is "wow, so I could do that too?". If none of them look like you, then the reaction is not that. You might end up doing that thing anyway - no corellation is 100% - but the idea that children have role models that they can relate to is not some hard hitting hot take.
Do you have counter-studies to cite, or is just a case of academic consensus not agreeing with you and so being ignored? I'm actually astonished by your responses here. You're writing with an air of superiority and authority while asking basic questions like "Who are these people?" and "How do you know they exist?" which I had assumed were fundamental bases of any legitimate discussion on the topic.
My original point was nothing to do with whether such people exist or not, by the way, I'm just asking that question now because you seem to be referring to some research that I'm not aware of.
You're probably going to consider this flippant, but: Having the same arguments over and over again with people who haven't done any research is too boring for me to be willing to do it again. I have limited time and it isn't my job to google for you. If you were saying "I disagree with the research" or "I have problems with the research" then that's interesting enough to be engaging, but "I am unaware of the research" means we'd just be having the same conversation I've had a dozen times before. No thank you.
Men are not a "niche" and, again, I really don't care that those people all have penises. To equate Donald Knuth and Steve Jobs because of their genitalia is absurd. Those men have actually done things and it is those things that we might choose to admire.