equity


Women working in science, technology, engineering and mathematics at NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory pose for a photo in mission control in honor of Women in Science Day. Photo: NASA/JPL-Caltech

Fighting for a Diverse and Equitable STEM Workforce in Colorado

Marian Hamilton, , UCS

In the state of Colorado, there are just over two million women, making up 53% of the enrolled undergraduate population and 50% of the workforce. However, women account for only 33% of those graduating with degrees in STEM (science, technology, engineering, and math) and hold only 26% of STEM jobs in the state. Colorado is not unique – this disparity in STEM education and employment is a nation-wide trend. This disparity begins early, with difference in male and female student interest in STEM showing up as early as middle school, by some estimates, and female students being more likely to self-describe themselves as “bad at math” as early as second grade. These differences in encouragement and interest have broad-reaching, profound, and lifelong implications for women’s economic security, career advancement, and workforce readiness compared to their male counterparts. Read more >

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Climate-Safe Infrastructure for All: California Working Group Report Provides Comprehensive Recommendations

, Western states senior climate analyst

Nearly two years ago, the Climate-Safe Infrastructure bill (AB 2800, Quirk, 2016) became law and established the Climate-Safe Infrastructure Working Group (CSIWG) to develop recommendations to the California legislature on how to build and design our infrastructure to be safer for Californians in the face of growing climate extremes. Since then, unprecedented wildfires and mudslides, record-breaking temperatures and precipitation have added an exclamation point to the importance of this group’s work in preparing our infrastructure to keep us safe, as we’ve experienced the risks and what’s at stake. Today, the CSIWG released its report, Paying it Forward: The Path Toward Climate-Safe Infrastructure in California, which recommends an ambitious and attainable path forward.

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CSIWG, Paying It Forward
CSIWG, Paying It Forward
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Photo: Dllu/Wikimedia Commons

Transitioning the Workforce in the Era of Autonomous Vehicles: Meet Dr. Algernon Austin

, Kendall Science Fellow

I spoke with Dr. Algernon Austin*, an economist with the think tank Dēmos and co-author of “Stick Shift: Autonomous Vehicles, Driving Jobs, and the Future of Work,” to get an expert’s opinions on the future of the driving workforce. I asked him about potential impacts of AVs on the labor market and he discussed ways to provide job training opportunities for transportation workers that will be affected by the AV revolution. Read more >

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Photo: Omari Spears/UCS

Public Discussion of Science Policy Surges Nationwide as Thousands Engage in Science Rising

, Deputy director, Center for Science & Democracy

The great awakening of the science community is only gaining steam in the wake of increased attacks on science. Since the spring launch of Science Rising, we’ve recorded more than 125 events submitted by 118 organizations around the country who are focused on making sure science is front and center in the decision-making processes that affect us all. As we get closer to the midterm elections, it becomes ever more critical for us to create conversations that encourage elected officials to protect science. Here are 5 Science Rising events you may have missed—and 5 more coming up, including a Twitter chat later today.

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Photo: Omari Spears/UCS
Photo: John Saller
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Members of the Wishtoyo Foundation who are fighting the proposed Mission Rock gas plant slated for sacred Chumash lands gather with members of CAUSE who successfully fought the proposed Puente gas plant. The proposed site of Puente, the Mandalay Bay gas plant, lies in the background on the Oxnard coast. Photo credit: Chris Jordan-Bloch/Earthjustice

Transition to Renewable Energy: Legislation Puts Clean Air and Vulnerable Communities First

Gladys Limon,

A number of California’s natural gas power plants are located in low-income communities of color. For decades, these communities have unjustly carried the burden of powering our state and paid the highest price — their health — for dirty energy. The good news is that, according to an analysis just released by the Union of Concerned Scientists, California can retire a significant amount of natural gas generation because it is no longer needed. The bad news is that as California increases its reliance on renewable energy, an unintended consequence is that existing natural gas plants could get dirtier.

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