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Exclusive: Jess Wade from the Physics Department discusses how to include more women and minorities in STEM


Dr. Jess Wade is on a long-term mission to ensure that Wikipedia includes women and minorities.

Wade tells Sonia Baghdady about the often overlooked contributions of women to the scientific community. Get involved now. Wade created 1,780 Wikipedia biographies for underrepresented researchers to address the problem of a lack of information about minority scientists.

She says that she has created approximately 1,800. “Everyday I feel so inspired and excited about discovering and writing about all of these amazing women and people of colour, as well as people from historically exclusion groups.”

Wade says, “It’s hard to be objective when you’re writing on such amazing and impressive people… It means that I have to reduce my enthusiasm a bit.”

Wade published a 2019 report showing that only 17 percent of Wikipedia’s English-language biographies were written by women. Wade said that while it was an alarming problem for Wikipedia, it was indicative of a wider problem in society.

She explained that “Society has been biased towards white men versus those of underrepresented communities.” “If we look at society, we don’t do enough to honor — whether that’s in newspapers, or awards,…

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