The Netherlands has the strongest stereotypes associating science with men, according to a new US study using data from nearly 350,000 people in 66 nations.
The survey was carried out by researchers at Northwestern University who found stereotypes were often strong in countries which have strived for gender equality such as Denmark, the Netherlands and Norway.
Dutch respondents were most likely of all those questioned to identify science with men, the survey found. The Netherlands also had by far the fewest female science students and researchers.
‘Dutch men outnumbered Dutch women by nearly four to one among both science majors and employed researchers,’ report author David Miller said on the university website. ‘The strong stereotypes in the Netherlands therefore reflect the reality of male dominance in science there.’
The research showed that the stereotype of the male scientist prevails everywhere, even in countries where half the science students are female, such as Argentina and Bulgaria.