|Volume 3: No. 37|
"The 6th Annual Computer Industry Almanac" (1993), by Karen Petska Juliussen and Egil Juliussen, reports salary data from industry surveys by Computerworld, Datamation, Source EDP, Positive Support Review, and Source Engineering. (Categories don't break out specific platforms, languages, or specialty areas.) Its list of 2,909 computer companies -- with rankings from Datamation, Electronic Business, Forbes, Fortune, and Soft.Letter -- is also available on disk for $200. 800 pages, $45 (paperback) from Computer Industry Almanac Inc., 225 Allen Way, Incline Village, NV 89451-9608; (800) 377-6810. [CPU, 9/6/93.] (To sign up for the CPU newsletter, send a "sub cpsr-cpu your name" message to email@example.com. It's a watchdog on layoffs and management abuses in the computing industry.)
Women CIOs ("Cheaper Information Officers") earn 6.2% less than men, but women PC managers earn 6.1% more than men. [CW. WSJ, 9/14/93. EDUPAGE.] Women IS managers earn 15% less than men (unadjusted for seniority or willingness to work "crazy hours"), but that's better than the 21% gap last year. Women are now about 33% of the computing work force, including 43% of the LAN managers, 50% of the database managers, 58% of the communications specialists, and 72% of the senior systems analysts. Fewer women are now help desk operators. [CW, 9/6/93, p. 91.] (See this Computerworld issue for regional and industry salaries in 28 job categories.)
International Network of Women in Technology (WIT) emphasizes empowerment rather than a victim mentality, although it does lobby against glass ceilings. WIT maintains a discussion list, membership directory, and job hotline. Contact Carolyn.Turbyfill @eng.sun.com or Kathleen Bernard (firstname.lastname@example.org) about dues. 4641 Burnet Avenue, Sherman Oaks, CA 91403. [CPU, 9/6/93.]
There is also a Systers discussion list for women only, but I don't have an address handy. See the Computing Research News prior to the current 9/93 issue.
Three more Computists have sent me comments on Deborah Tannen's book. Ben Moreland (email@example.com) found her behavioral descriptions surprisingly accurate, although there must certainly be exceptions. The book serves as a good discussion topic in mixed groups. Most readers identify with the examples, and Tannen claims equal merit for differing conversational styles. Mark Kantrowitz (firstname.lastname@example.org) notes that there is an extensive literature on gender differences in verbal and non-verbal communication ("genderlects"). For references, see p. 29 of Brown and Levinson's "Politeness: Some Universals in Language Usage" (Cambridge University Press, 2nd Ed., 1987). Robin Lakoff published important papers in 1975-79. Many later researchers have found that power, control, and status rather than gender are the dominant variables: high-status men interrupt low-status men, etc. Another good reference is pp. 103-109 of Ellis and Beattie's "Psychology of Language and Communication" (Guilford Press, 1986). Many flawed or limited studies have become urban legends, and are too often cited out of context. (Tannen's book posits a simple theory and then gives chapter after chapter of supporting examples. It's easy to digest and emotionally satisfying, but she cites only observations that fit her framework. She appeals to intuition, but does not marshall large-sample studies to support her case. In her defense, studies based on status differences might be inappropriately biased toward a male view of the world.) These urban legends (or stereotypes) can cause problems if men in power use them to second-guess what women "really" mean in professional situations. Ignorance is no better, though, and I'm glad to see cultural issues brought up for general discussion. I'm not qualified to advise women on assertiveness, or even to say that assertiveness is a proper perspective for viewing women's career issues -- but I'll occasionally pass along such advice, just as I do with medical, legal, and financial articles.
For more on these subjects, attend the 1994 Berkeley Women and Language Conference, "Communication In, Through, and Across Cultures," April 8-10, 1994. Deborah Tannen of Georgetown University is one of ten invited speakers. Registration is $20-$40; papers are solicited. [Berkeley Women and Language Group (email@example.com), LINGUIST, 9/1/93.]