GoldieBlox is a toy company on a mission to inspire the next generation of female engineers.I watched the videos, read the blog, read the critical acclaim, read opinions of women who had daughters play with the toys, and read all the unnecessary legal documents relating to alleged infringement. i.e., Goldieblox's preemptive request for a jury trial. All of that is common knowledge by now; that debate is tabled. The debate moves forward or dies in my mind.
Goldieblox has shown its real colors, grifter pink. Pink has tainted girls products since the later part of the last century. Nothing wrong with pink if that's your thing. However, when a toy company declares its mission is to inspire girls to become engineers, pink princess is not the path. The toy is a hokey ruse by marketing people. Looking at Disrupting the pink aisle what do you see? Marketing, slick flimflam marketing. What about the number of engineers worldwide; male 89%, female 11% you ask? All I can say is, no data. Try this stat.
"Over 55 percent of males who majored in science acquired jobs in physics, mathematics, or engineering after graduation. In contrast, only 34 percent of female majors in these same areas obtained positions in related fields. Correlation of these results to other fields was not possible. For example, 68 percent of females who majored in humanities secured teaching positions after graduation; only 52 percent of similarly trained males secured similar positions. Further analysis is necessary to explain these different outcomes for men and women, including understanding “What are the influences of expected outcomes on the labor market. -Angelica Salvi Del Pero  ”
That is a solid figure. There is only hype at Goldieblox as I have noted above. Headline grabbing stunts do little to untangle the issues women deal with in education and workplace when selecting a career in STEM. Maybe I am being too harsh. Maybe I am just not getting it.
I suggest everyone read Blueprint for the Future [PDF] because there are meaningful solutions offered up with the cold hard facts.
1. Blueprint for the Future: Framing the Issues of Women in Science in a Global Context: Summary of a Workshop (2012) p.4, http://www.nap.edu/openbook.php?record_id=13306, The National Academies Press
2. Science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) is a commonly used acronym in the United States.