The 10-page memo that former Google software engineer James Damore wrote arguing against gender diversity in the workplace is sexist. The memo, which takes aim at Google’s diversity and inclusion initiatives, asserts that the lack of women in the tech industry is directly linked to biological differences between men and women. For instance, Damore asserts that women don’t succeed as often as men in the high-pressure tech industry because of their more neurotic nature and lower tolerance for stress compared to men rather than because of other oft-cited claims of sexism. He bases these and other antiquated and stereotyped misconceptions on biological essentialism and biological determinism, two theories that have been largely discredited in today's mainstream scientific community.
Despite how it's being portrayed in the media, James Damore’s memo, titled “Google’s Ideological Echo Chamber,” is factually accurate, argues Debra Soh of Globe and Mail. Asserting that the reason behind Google’s gender gap was not due to discrimination but inherent differences in the brain influencing what men and women find interesting is a fair analysis and can be backed up by science. For example, as his memo highlights, gendered interests are predetermined by exposure to testosterone levels in the womb: higher levels are connected with a preference for mechanical interests and occupations in adulthood while lower levels are connected with a preference for people-oriented activities and occupations. This, and additional new genetic research, scientifically explain why STEM fields tend to have more men.