EXECUTIVE SUMMARY

Closing the STEM Gender Gap

In the UK, men outnumber women three-to-one in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) professions (78% compared with 22%).1 This enormous gender gap persists, despite decades of government and private programs aimed at increasing the number of girls and women in STEM.

The British Consulate partnered with the Geena Davis Institute for Gender in Media to conduct the first systematic assessment of the role media plays in this persistent STEM gender gap. In this report, we examine representations of STEM characters in the top UK children’s film, television, and streaming content. Media are influential in shaping the values and career paths of young viewers. Understanding what messages girls, boys, and gender non-conforming kids are getting about STEM in their favorite TV shows is key to understanding whether this powerful medium is encouraging or discouraging girls from pursuing STEM.

IF SHE CAN SEE IT, SHE CAN BE IT