It is no secret that a gender disparity in the technology sector exists. While the causes of this difference are wide-ranging, one key area where targeted action is needed is at the university level. To investigate this further, we surveyed five of the top six universities in Switzerland offering a Bachelor of Computer Science.
We found that, in 2016, a total of only 82 new enrolments were women (an average of 12.53%). While this number has increased since 2013 (a total of 57 women), the average gender proportion has remained constant. We argued that the three primary reasons women choose to study computer science are guidance, exposure to the subject in school and practicality.
Another issue we found at the university level was significant drop-out rates. The principal explanations for these drop-out rates are computer science experience and negative bias. We then investigated current practices in the industry to propose solutions to help fix the gender disparity.
While we are aware it will take time to increase the number of women in computer science degrees, we hope this report can start a dialogue and help create a ripple effect to reduce the gender disparity in the technology industry as a whole.
Download the full report below.