This year's funding application season is almost upon us, which means that my fellow students and I are getting ready for another round of talking ourselves up and finding ways to make our research sound important to people who don't know anything about it. And in a surprising* twist of fate, all my female colleagues and I have to work harder to get these than our penis-possessing** counterparts.
The lab culture has been influenced by typically masculine patterns of relating and as such, also engendered competition. Perhaps, scientific discovery would proceed at a more accelerated pace if increased cooperation and collaboration became cornerstone. When girls enter STEM fields of study and work, they bring a different way of relating.