Discussion » Shakti Konna Module 2: Unconscious Bias - Discussion Page
Dear Shokti Konna Participants, welcome to the Unconcious Bias Discussion Page. Here you can interact with our expert speaker, Dr. Josebe, and discuss/ask questions on the module/topics, and share your personal experiences with your classmates. Please complete Module 1 and 2 of the Unconcious Bias Training before the virtual session on June 1, and Modules 3 and 4 before the second virtual session on June 22. Please find the links below and happy learning!
OLC Unconscious Bias (4 Modules – 1 hour each)
Virtual Plenary Discussion Connection Details
Discussion 1: Wed 6/1/2022 8:00 AM - 9:00 AM EST (6pm BDT)
Meeting ID: 897 5898 1276
Discussion 2: Wed 6/22/2022 9:30 AM - 11:00 AM EST EST (6pm BDT)
Meeting ID: 870 2690 8563
Hello, everyone! My name is Josebe Bilbao-Henry and I am a Senior HR Officer focused on Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion at WBG. A lot of my work focuses on creating learning paths and experiences on unconscious bias. I find that the more we know about how our brains operate and how we behave in social settings such as the workplace, the better we can address the blindspots biases create in our decision-making and, very crucially, in our interactions at work.
I am very keen on engaging you all as you expore the various eLearning modules on bias available in this program. Even before we "meet" virtually in the Plenary Discussions, you may post question and comments in this forum. I will do my best to engage!
I look forward to all of us learning together!
Thanks, Josebe Miren Bilbao Mam for today's session, it was very insightful and interactive. I would like to share some thoughts on "Gender biases" that I have discussed with my groupmates during the session.
Considering us as modern people of the 21st century, we sometimes have a false sense that our modern society has conquered gender bias completely. But, in reality, there is still the tendency to consider women less capable even in the most educated society. I think that is called what was the main topic of today's discussion "Unconscious Bias". The deleterious impact of "unconscious bias" rather than the "conscious bias" is that people hardly acknowledge or even realize that they are committing it. For example, in STEM fields, we feel so happy to see many female students joining Engineering Universities nowadays and graduating with excellent academic success. We feel like - "wow!! see we have finally eliminated the gender bias from our Engineering field! So many girls are joining Engineering schools and are doing good in academic life." But how many of them are successfully joining the job sector or let's say securing a steady job life? The sad part of our so-called success story is that- we still couldn't ensure an unbiased workplace for our talented female Engineers. Many engineering job sectors still do not have a work-friendly environment for female employees.
We also discussed possible strategies to improve the scenario- I think we should keep spreading awareness about the "Gender Bias" among all of the class- even among those whom we think are out of the suspect of any kind of biasness. As it is a form of "Unconscious Bias", it is much more deep-rooted and hard to trace. So, naturally, it will take more time to create an unbiased world. But, keeping patience, we need to talk more about it, especially in the workplace to make a better understanding of the problem among all of us. Maybe arranging frequent seminars or open discussions on the impacts and realities of "Gender Bias" would help to mitigate the problem gradually. We have to ensure a cooperative work environment with everyone's participation. We, the women also need to raise our voices much. I believe, together, we will be able to make a better future for ourselves.
Hello Ms. Josebe,
Thank you for the wonderful session. I would like to share our views on biases that I have discussed with my group mates Tabassum and Pranti and would love to know your opinion on this
To answer the 1st question, I think being female professionals from STEM field, most of us would want to talk about gender bias, specially the kind of bias us females face trying to fit in tech industry/energy industry/ STEM, more than anything else because almost all of us have experienced this first hand.
And what we believe is, this is not just a hindrance in our way rather it have an adverse effect on the whole nation. We see more and more female students have been enrolling into STEM related subjects. For example, we have more female engineering graduates than before. While this could be a good news, reality is in our country most of us female engineers struggle to utilize their talent in the field because in most cases they are not even given the chance. Most of the cases, they are stuck with administrative/ management/business development or other kind of stereotypical desk job roles we believe which are ideal for female. Despite coming from a technical background they cannot put their talent into any real use. Not taking female tech leaders seriosuly is so normalized that no one even feels the need to raise questions about it. This way, a major portion of talent is left unutilized which we feel is a real big loss for the nation .
Gender Bias in job sector is so deep rooted that, it actually needs a lot of attention, work and years of reconstructing of typical mindset to mitigate its impact. Some of the measures which we can take is:
1. Despite the stereotypes, some of us have reached their desired positions in tech industry/energy sector/ STEM. Networking between these successful professionals and young female students and young professionals and students should be increased though trainings, seminars or even personally. We have to push ourselves and other female colleagues to reach our goals breaking all the bias.
2. Every organization should give more and more attention towards this problem and help their employees break these stereotypical thought patterns anyway they can. It can be by arranging trainings or open discussions, reviewing if all of the employees are actually given chance equally.
3. Creating social awareness in a vast way. Not to mention while raising our future generation we have to be extra careful not to pass on these streotypes to them. I dont believe gender bias or any other bias can be fully removed from the world we live in, while we definitely can and need to mitigate its impact. However, I think the idea of an unbiased world is not absolutely impossible if we can raise our next generation with proper values.
Dear Subah, Tabassum and Pranti,
The three-prong approach to tackle gender bias and its negative impact on importnat industry sectors and the economy in general is spot on. It starts in schools, where the eduction system can be transformed to dismantle gender stereotypes, and continues up to the workplace in organizations that need to track data on career pipelines and opportunities given to both men and women. It is a matter of fairness and justice. The more we know about the negative impact of underutilized talent and innovative ideas that comes from such biases, the more we can be moved to act. In your proposed solutions, I particularly like the first one, which stresses the need to create networks of female professionals in STEM.
This is the opportunity for this cohort, to continue your discussions beyond this experience, to share resources and information about positions, about good companies that support femalte talent in technologies, and about accomplishments and innovation that come from women in the sector, which need to be known by the larger community.
How would you go about this?