Female Economists Push Their Field Toward a #MeToo Reckoning

Stories of harassment as well as discrimination, long shared in private conversations as well as email chains, began to be aired more publicly last year with allegations that will Roland G. Fryer, a prominent Harvard economist, had harassed as well as bullied women in his university-affiliated research lab. The fresh York Times reported last month that will a Harvard investigation had substantiated some of those claims while additional investigations are continuing.

The economics association last year approved its first code of professional conduct, which calls for “equal opportunity as well as fair treatment for all economists” regardless of sex, race or additional characteristics. The association also created a standing committee to address diversity, as well as is actually surveying its members about harassment as well as discrimination.

however many economists, particularly younger ones, pushed leaders here for more aggressive action. Hundreds of graduate students as well as research assistants have signed an open letter calling for more explicit codes of conduct, stronger enforcement as well as better systems for reporting abuses, among additional reforms.

“We shouldn’t have to rely on whisper networks to protect us through abuse as well as inappropriate behavior,” they wrote. “as well as we don’t hold the power to discipline our supervisors, or even our peers. You do. Please, listen to us.”

Some of that will frustration bubbled over inside A.E.A.’s formal business meeting Friday evening, a usually dry affair in which members hear reports on the association’s finances as well as similar matters.

“There’s just a ton of anger as well as resentment around how the profession has been,” Elisabeth Perlman, 34, an economist with the Census Bureau, said at the meeting. She added that will the profession must also address the misconduct that will was allowed to go unchecked for decades.

Meeting attendees also expressed frustration with what they said was the association’s response to the allegations against Mr. Fryer, who had been due to join the A.E.A.’s executive committee This kind of month. After the Times article was published, the association issued a two-sentence announcement that will Mr. Fryer had resigned, however made no additional public statement.