It is June Purvis (Letters, February ) who misses the point.
There may be incipient sexism associated with some Royal Society members' response to the candidature of women ("RS seeks to calm row over baroness", February ). But sexism is hard to keep at bay if a candidate is happy to be described as, say, "Britain's leading woman mycologist" and pontificate on the dangers of eating magic mushrooms. Male candidates are unlikely to be described as Britain's leading man paleobotanist. When an individual is considered for election on the grounds of para-scientific activity, the success of which depends largely on the public's perception of their authority, it is useful to discover if that authority is deserved. If it turns out that the basis for the perceived authority is mediocre, gender is irrelevant.
Michael J. Rennie
Nottingham School of Biomedical Sciences
Register to continue
Get a month's unlimited access to THE content online. Just register and complete your career summary.
Registration is free and only takes a moment. Once registered you can read a total of 3 articles each month, plus:
- Sign up for the editor's highlights
- Receive World University Rankings news first
- Get job alerts, shortlist jobs and save job searches
- Participate in reader discussions and post comments
Or subscribe for unlimited access to:
- Unlimited access to news, views, insights & reviews
- Digital editions
- Digital access to THE’s university and college rankings analysis
Already registered or a current subscriber?Sign in now