So, ever since I wrote about Being on the Circuit, I've been wondering about the truth behind the General's Disarray new tactic for convincing me to actually get on a plane and give departmental seminar talks.
In my experience, invitations to speak at departmental seminars often arise from either a colleague issuing an invite and/or an internal nomination process with a committee (sometimes the committee is really just one person) deciding who to invite from the nominations. There are also other modes for generating speakers (i.e., press gangs roaming the department looking for students and assistant professors who may have promotion or Ph.D defense obligations), but General Disarray's argument has made me wonder what exactly is the proportion of women giving departmental seminars in a seminar series? Obviously, I have shown myself prone to obsessive compulsive data collection, but I thought this might be more fun, (and less detrimental to my tenure aspirations) if my readers helped me with this. So....if you have a few spare minutes (ha ha ha), and are also interested in this, feel free to send me the following information on whatever seminar series you tend to attend:
Number of speakers, number of women
It might also be interesting to know what the proportion of women is in the group the seminar is for (i.e. if it's a departmental seminar, then the proportion of female faculty - I know, I know this ignores the grad students and post-docs but this can be difficult info to get) to get an idea if the gender representation of the seminar series represent the group for whom the seminar series serves (I actually suspect the gender ratio of those invited to speak is lower than the department's).... I could ask for much much more info, but its the end of the semester and I don't want to overladen people - besides this is just for curiosity. Feel free to either leave the info here as a comment or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org (as I'm warming up to the idea that the blogosphere actually likes to talk back - not in a pejorative sense - I've decided to experiment with actually having an 'official' email address for the blog. If I decide it doesn't freak me out too much, I'll make it permanent)
To lead the way, here's the info for the seminar I attend:
8 speakers, 1 woman, 29% female at host institution
Thanks for indulging me! I promise to compile and present in a future post!