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    Biswapriya Mishra said:

    Socio-economic-religious effects are clearly visible as factors drastically affecting the gender equality, without a doubt. More so, because to my observations and pertains to many parts of the world/countries:
    1. Social structure to which they belong and religious faiths do restrict females in terms of voicing of opinions, travels and sampling trips and so on.
    2. Many male PIs laboratory flocked with only ‘female candidates’, not a single male researcher. Coincidence?
    3. Many female PIs laboratories full with only females, not a single male researcher. Again (preferred) coincidence?
    4. Buddy system [networks/ linking within females] is preferred and facilitated still!
    5. Looking down upon a ‘female colleague’ in terms of ‘intellect and involvement’ is still predominant. For example- [a] pointing out the inability to push/move the refrigerator! [b] not being proactive/ dynamic enough and so on !
    6. In the developing world, the provision for maternity leave [until the delivery no leaves! which is pathetic] is there no doubt, but things Said/Commented regarding the pregnancy [by PI, colleagues etc.], starting for marriage on wards even in academia is horrible!
    7. Still cases of exploitations [without naming the worrisome adjectives!] do happen [and keeps happening], without any clear reason coming out to the day light, most of the time!
    8. Not sure at all [answers would be negative from many in this regards], if female representation, special guidance towards jobs and careers/ recruitments and mentoring like schemes exist at all!
    Unending story really! It is the egg and chicken problem to me, where, as long as the males ‘exist’ this positive-bias or antagonism [either ways] will be there with females! A simple question: Is it important to have the females/ girl students to be at the Registration Desk for all Institutes/ Conferences/ Seminars/ Workshops without a fail? It is not bias? To me, also, the drive for ‘gender equality’ [workplace/ academia] and ‘woman empowerment’ [worldwide] seems contradictory, as in the first case we want to identify and get rid of problems associated with the females, while in the latter case, we want to treat females as equals. In a very subtle note, a question simmers: Are not these efforts to GIVE gender equality to a particular section, is in itself a Gender Profiling, esp. in the developed world of UK or for that matter, elsewhere ?

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    Richard Haigh said:

    To what extent does gender equality in academia apply equally to both sexes? Let us consider the case of Gender Studies: how well represented are men in this subject area? If I a male possess gender why should I not be represented in Gender Studies in terms of the students and academics who study and work in this field of study? If affirmative action or positive discrimination are deployed against men in male dominated disciplines (SET subjects) on the basis that these disciplines are un-representative of women why should we not also apply affirmative action or positive discrimination to areas of academic study which are un-representative of men? Why not apply affirmative action or positive discrimination to increase male representation in female dominated disciplines for example in Gender Studies? Where are the organisations and the funding to encourage true equality for the male sex when it is at the disadvantage of women?

    The truth of the matter is that society and women in general don’t want true gender equality. What is really meant by gender equality in the above article and in the wider society is that female identity will be preserved at the expense of male identity. But true equality means absolute equivalence of the sexes: if men and women are the same why should women be more entitled to a sense of identity than men?

    Speaking as a male scientist I would be more inclined to accept women as equals if I felt that I was treated equally. It is the unequal actions of the wider society and of women in general which are the cause of most resentment and opposition to change!