Bias Detecting Game Receives $2M in Backing

October 11, 2010 -

A University of Wisconsin-Madison doctor is the beneficiary of three-year long, $2 million grant to develop an interactive game designed to “uncover and neutralize implicit, unintentional biases against women, minorities and people with disabilities.”

The grant, entitled the National Institutes of Health Director's Pathfinder Award to Promote Diversity in the Scientific Workforce, came from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act and is administered by the National Institute of General Medical Sciences.

Molly Carnes (pictured), Director of the school’s Center for Women's Health Research, will oversee the development of the games, which will “place faculty in situations where they can recognize the self-defeating nature of implicit bias.”

An example given was “a faculty member might be asked to compete to hire a top scientist with another university and to schedule an accessible campus visit to Madison for the candidate, who needs a wheelchair.”

Carnes, who hopes the game will improve diversity on the UW-Madison campus, added, “For 25 years, the research agencies have said, if the U.S. is going to maintain its competitive edge in a global economy that is increasingly knowledge-based, we must invest in the domestic workforce in science, math, engineering and medicine.”


Comments

Re: Bias Detecting Game Receives $2M in Backing

I wonder if I could get $2 million to develop a game where you play a giant ivory golem tasked with amassing an army of large-breasted, blonde-haired, blue-eyed broads in tight-fitting outfits for your Saruman-looking god to conquer the world with? Not likely eh?

Re: Bias Detecting Game Receives $2M in Backing

“uncover and neutralize implicit, unintentional biases against women, minorities and people with disabilities.”

You know, it really annoys me when people act like there aren't any biases against white males who aren't in wheelchairs or have Down's syndrome/severe speech impediments/bi-polar disorder/etc. etc. We don't have any support/advocacy groups. When one of us is portrayed in a negative light, as I see happening in a LOT of TV commercials these days, no one gives a shit. But when one of us does something remotely offensive or rude to anyone who isn't also a white male without a handicap of some kind, all of a sudden we're freakin' Hitler.

Sorry, didn't mean to get all political. Just had to get that off my chest. I'm sure I'm not the only person who notices and is bothered by this. I admire trying to make the world a better place, but this isn't the way to do it, it just creates resentment towards people who really don't deserve it.

Re: Bias Detecting Game Receives $2M in Backing

I agree with you there, in fact I have been known to argue that affirmative action only hinders progress by labeling people as inferior.

How often when you look around do you see that one women, person of non-European decent, or with a handicap who is under-qualified, not capable or just plain outright lazy and think that "They only got this job to fill a minority quota" and the sad thing you then have to ask yourself "Is really bigotry if that is why they got the job?".

It would be nice if we could go back to dealing with people based on their own merit, and not their sex/race/handicap. And thank god, I come from a multi-racial family otherwise my thoughts would be considered racist/sexist.

~Weatherlight~

~Weatherlight~

Re: Bias Detecting Game Receives $2M in Backing

You are absolutely right.

I remember reading about a student who was fed up with the targeted scholarships offered and posted a satirical ad for a $100 scholarship to be paid to white heterosexual males. There was a huge uproar by minority groups who saw the ad as offensive to race, sexuality and gender. But they see no problem with scholarships targeting just homosexuals, or women, or ethnic/racial groups.

But hey, we live in a affirmative action world now where any minority should be exalted above anyone else regardless of qualifications.

E. Zachary Knight
Oklahoma City Chapter of the ECA
http://www.theeca.com/chapters_oklahoma

Re: Bias Detecting Game Receives $2M in Backing

I remember that scholarship, and the Winner was harassed to the point that he gave back the money.

~Weatherlight~

~Weatherlight~

Re: Bias Detecting Game Receives $2M in Backing

See that's exactly what I'm talking about when I speak of creating resentment towards people undeserving of it: We've created a society here in the U.S. that portrays white males as some over-bearing force of oppression that will hold people of different gender/race/mental capacity back the first chance they get, and that any preferential treatment offered to anyone else is simply leveling the playing field.

Yes prejudice still exists, yes some people won't get hired/into a university because of race/gender/handicap/etc., but making laws where a person's race/gender/handicap factors into their acceptance anywhere doesn't help the situation. There may have been a time where businesses/colleges/etc had to be told that they couldn't discriminate, but the time for always assuming that it's going to happen has long since passed. The field is level now. White guys like me aren't oppressing anybody, we're too busy blowing away space aliens and slaying dragons.

 
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