Breaking Bias

In 2015, Devine partnered with Molly Carnes, the director of the UW’s Center for Women’s Health Research, to examine, and potentially reduce, gender bias in departmental units covering all fields of science, engineering, and medicine across UW-Madison. Over the course of the two-year study, 92 departments were broken into two groups—46 departments served as control departments and 46 departments received the bias training. At the end of the study, which made use of Devine’s bias disruptor tools, faculty in the latter group reported engaging in more bias-reducing actions and experiencing a more inclusive departmental climate. These departments also saw their hiring rate for women jump from 33 to 47 percent, while the control group’s hiring rate remained fixed at 33 percent.

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