NSF has announced this year’s Waterman Award winner, chemist Mircea Dincã. He is clearly an excellent scientist, but I am disappointed to see that NSF’s streak of male award winners continues. Dincã is the 13th consecutive man to win the award, over the past 12 years. (In 2012, two men won the award.)
NSF says, “The annual award recognizes an outstanding young researcher in any field of science or engineering supported by the National Science Foundation.” It is simply unacceptable that a woman has not received this prestigious award (and the $1 million grant that comes with it) since 2004.
As I’ve written about in the past, all of the winners have been excellent scientists and engineers. But a streak this long indicates bias. There have been excellent women scientists and engineers nominated during that time. I really hope that NSF enacts changes to deal with this in the future.