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Re: Is the IETF aging?

On Apr 27, 2012, at 2:53 PM, SM wrote:
> Mary Barnes is the only participant who mentions the gender problem.  As such, I gather that the IETF does not have a gender problem. :-)

The rest of us are too busy struggling to succeed in this male-dominated regime to have time to read these threads.  :-)

Seriously, though...

I don't think that the relatively low numbers of women in the IETF leadership are necessarily indicative of a problem, because I think they roughly match the low percentage of women among IETF attendees. 

I don't even know if the lack of female attendance at the IETF is a problem, because I don't know how our percentages map to the percentage of female networking engineers in the industry, or to the percentage of females who attend other major standards organizations, like the IEEE or the 3GPP.  We are an engineering organization, so I wouldn't expect us to be half women, because there are a lot more male engineers than female ones.

If IETF meetings are attended by a lower percentage of women than IEEE or 3GPP meetings, and/or if we feel that our attendance is not proportional to the number of women in our industry, then we might want to explore why that happens, and consider some changes in our culture to address the causes.  We shouldn't try to fix this particular aspect of our organization if it isn't broken, though.


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