A simple question.

How long has the social/political drive for the idea of "Women in STEM" been around? Lately, it feels as though a stigma has been attached to non-STEM degrees/jobs if you are a women. Has this "movement" existed beyond only recent years?

  • 1
    This movement really isn't a political one, but an ideological one.
    – Machavity
    Jun 27, 2017 at 19:46
  • 2
    I would respectfully disagree. People use certain perspectives on political topics such as "Wage Gap" or "Feminist Movement" and that in turn gets translated into something such as promoting STEM specifically to women. I believe this is a political question.
    – Lanet Rino
    Jun 27, 2017 at 19:53
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    @Machavity After all, politics is 100% about ideology.
    – Lanet Rino
    Jun 27, 2017 at 20:08
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    We drift away by discussing the relation of politics and ideology which is not so clear as you suggest @LanetRino (a nice question though ;) Since increasing the percentage of women in STEM subjects is a political decision and is clearly related to gender policies and research policy, I don't see a problem in discussing the topic here. Nevertheless, you could specifiy this question in terms of spatial scope and time. About which country are we talking about? And what does 'only recent years' mean for you?
    – Stefan_W
    Jun 27, 2017 at 21:03
  • Are you asking about its current discriminatory form, or about general idea that more women in STEM is "good"? The latter for a while, the former was spawned by 3rd wave feminism
    – user4012
    Jun 28, 2017 at 0:30

1 Answer 1


The movement has existed for over 50 years.

The society of women engineers was founded in 1950, with among its goals to "Stimulate women to achieve full potential in careers as engineers". The Womens Engineering Society was founded in 1919, with its roots during the first world war.

Thus there have been attempts to encourage women into STEM careers since the 1950s. Equal pay legislation has existed since the 1970s, this is an example of a public policy which is intended to encourage women into the workplace.

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