No girls allowed: Canada’s poached professors all have penises

No girls allowed: Canada’s poached professors all have penises

Cocks of the walk: international researchers are welcomed in Ottawa (Image: Jenny Cestnik) 

After scouring the globe for some of the world’s smartest academics, the Canadian Excellence in Research Chair program has found 19 people whom it is paying tens of millions of dollars to come to Canada. Only one problem: the feds recruited a bunch of dudes. Even Industry Minister Tony Clement was critical of the sausage fest. “It really stands out,” he told the Star after the researchers were announced to much fanfare. “I said, ‘Where are the women?’”

“I felt kicked in the stomach,” says Wendy Robbins, co-ordinator of women’s studies at the University of New Brunswick and one of a group of academics who mounted a successful human-rights challenge to the gender imbalance in a previous federal research-chair program….  On this issue, though, the Conservative minister in charge is sympathetic.

The excuse/reason from the woman who runs the program, Suzanne Fortier, is that, at the moment, the women in fields the government was looking to fund are still early in their careers. “They are there. They are coming,” says Fortier. “In 10 years, watch out.”

Just what the Conservatives need: another problem with women voters, and this one means that a decade hence, an army of irate, disenfranchised lady super-geniuses is coming after them.

• Feds grant big dollars to all-male research group [Toronto Star]
• Female academics ‘discouraged’ after women shut out of funding  [Montreal Gazette]
• How Canada poached academic stars from around the globe [Globe and Mail]