2021 Video: In-Depth Reporting - Gold

“Picture a Scientist” invites viewers to imagine science as a more diverse, equitable and welcoming enterprise than historically has been the norm. It describes the experiences of three women—biologist Nancy Hopkins, chemist Raychelle Burks and geologist Jane Willenbring—who were subject to subtle slights and, in some cases, brutal harassment as they sought to build careers in science. Women still make up less than a quarter of STEM professionals in the United States, with the numbers even lower for women of color such as Burks. The film combines powerful personal stories with compelling statistics to explain how women have been treated in the sciences over the years and how much remains to be done. But while exploring longstanding patterns of discrimination against women, the filmmakers also do highlight ways in which science is becoming more inclusive, thanks to the efforts of determined women such as Hopkins, Burks and Willenbring who helped lead the way. British science journalist and Judge Angela Saini called the film “a landmark documentary, which I hope every scientist gets a chance to watch. Heart-wrenchingly honest, it unveils the deep, dark prejudice and abuse that has for too long denied women and minorities their rightful places in scientific research.” Guy Gugliotta, a freelance science writer formerly with The Washington Post, called the film “a comprehensive, engaging and unequivocal exposé of discrimination against women in science and the courageous—and ultimately successful—efforts to denounce and combat it."  In a statement, the production team noted that “striking a balance between hard data and the personal stories of our scientists was tricky (and involved watching many, many rough cuts!). We're grateful that the film continues to gain recognition and spark important conversations around women in science.”