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It could also be that Sweden just gives more pay to "women's work", in this way encouraging women to stay in their lane instead of going to other fields that can be more profitable and are reserved to men.

It could also be that the western stereotype of women being dumb with maths is just a western stereotype which has only effect in the West, and no such effect outside of the West.

It is also incorrect to assume that Scandinavia is a gender-equal paradise where everything is solved. They might have good parental leave for both mothers and fathers, but that doesn't mean that they don't assign specific fields to a specific gender.

[–] InfiniteGames 9 points Edited

It may also be that those countries considered "3rd world" have more room for opportunity in STEM, overall, and more need for engineers. Just a hunch.

Across the world, people associated science more strongly with men than with women.

But surprisingly, these gendered associations were stronger in supposedly egalitarian Sweden than they were in the U.S., and the most pro-female scores came from Jordan.

Ok, this article is oversimplifying. Very easy to do, because there's lots to untangle. It's possible that in less egalitarian countries being good at STEM is associated with high intelligence and being good in school, whereas in countries where intelligence is less important (more university graduates?) personality is weighed more. I've seen the argument over and over again that gifted women who are good at STEM are also good at other things that gifted men aren't good at, and go into those other things when they have the opportunity. They may lack those opportunities in less wealthy countries.

I don't care about how many women go into STEM. What I care about is women who would be good at STEM and bad in other fields being excluded because we don't fit stereotypes. (Personal bias here.)

I've seen this as well. I think essentially the argument is that in a truly egalitarian society, women have more options because our skillset can apply equally well to stereotypically male or female positions, whereas men are limited in certain regards. So when given the option, women choose more socially-oriented career paths because we (broadly speaking) find it more fulfilling.

I've seen the argument over and over again that gifted women who are good at STEM are also good at other things that gifted men aren't good at, and go into those other things when they have the opportunity.

Can you elaborate on this?

What I've read is that STEM men tend to be good at math/science and not social stuff, but STEM women tend to be good at both. I saw this in high school where gifted boys were not as good in English as gifted girls were, even though we all did equally well in math/science.

So as fields have opened up, more women have gone into medicine and law and fewer into engineering. Sexism in engineering (and computer science) has also been an issue but I think a lot of women just found socially-oriented fields to be more satisfying.

[–] [Deleted] 12 points Edited

Can confirm this anecdotally.

I'm from a developing country. I was always creative and way better at arts than science. Had zero opportunities in arts. Now I have a PhD in a STEM field from the US and I fantasize everyday of just waking out of this sexist cesspool and going back to arts.

If I had grown up in the US there's very little chance I'd have chosen the sciences.

But surprisingly, these gendered associations were stronger in supposedly egalitarian Sweden than they were in the U.S., and the most pro-female scores came from Jordan.

How is Sweden more "egalitarian" than the US, for example? What criteria is used to measure it? The WEF claims that Rwanda is also better at "gender equality" than the US, so my bs detector is going off.

Sweden is trying to get rid of prostitution, so that's one area.

I have no trouble believing that Rwanda is better for women in some regards than the US, to be honest.

But what all those theories do not take into regard is that there is no worldwide stereotype of "women are bad at STEM". The worldwide stereotype is "Women's work is worthless". For example, I read that in Russia, there are many female medical doctors, but this profession is treated as "women's work", and paid accordingly.

Men aren't really invested in keeping women out of STEM, they're invested in paying women badly. They only want to keep women out of STEM if there's men who want those jobs.

The Global Gender Gap Report uses all sorts of metrics. One is women in politics. Both Rwanda and Sweden do better than the US on that. Economic metrics may also benefit women in Sweden more.

https://www3.weforum.org/docs/WEF_GGGR_2021.pdf