Diversity and Inclusion in Open Source Software (OSS) Projects: Where Do We Stand?

Amiangshu Bosu, Kazi Zakia Sultana

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

Abstract

Background: As the area of computing has thrived over the years, the participation of women in computing declined. Currently women represent less than 24% of the computing workforce and that number is declining. On the other hand, the ratios of women in Open Source Software (OSS) projects are even lower.Aims: The primary objective of this study is to determine the level of gender diversity among popular OSS projects and identify the presence of gender biases that may discourage females' participation.Method: On this goal, we mined the code review repositories of ten popular OSS projects. We used a semi-automated approach followed by a manual validation to identify the genders of the active contributors.Results: Our results suggest that lack of gender diversity remains an ongoing issue among all the ten projects as each of the projects had less than 10% female developers. However, many of the projects also suffer from lack of inclusion of females to leadership positions. Although none of the projects suggest significant differences between male and female developers in terms of productivity based on three different measures, data from three out of the ten projects indicate technical biases against female developers with lower code acceptance rates as well as delayed feedback during code reviews. However, biases against females are not universal as majority of the projects do not discriminate against females. The two projects with the least ratios of female contributors as core developers showed the most biases against females.Conclusion: Based on our findings, we conclude that promoting and mentoring females to leadership positions may be an effective solution to foster gender diversity.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationProceedings - 13th ACM/IEEE International Symposium on Empirical Software Engineering and Measurement, ESEM 2019
PublisherIEEE Computer Society
ISBN (Electronic)9781728129686
DOIs
StatePublished - Sep 2019
Event13th ACM/IEEE International Symposium on Empirical Software Engineering and Measurement, ESEM 2019 - Porto de Galinhas, Pernambuco, Brazil
Duration: 19 Sep 201920 Sep 2019

Publication series

NameInternational Symposium on Empirical Software Engineering and Measurement
Volume2019-Septemer
ISSN (Print)1949-3770
ISSN (Electronic)1949-3789

Conference

Conference13th ACM/IEEE International Symposium on Empirical Software Engineering and Measurement, ESEM 2019
CountryBrazil
CityPorto de Galinhas, Pernambuco
Period19/09/1920/09/19

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Keywords

  • discrimination
  • diversity
  • gender issues
  • inclusion
  • open source projects

Cite this

Bosu, A., & Sultana, K. Z. (2019). Diversity and Inclusion in Open Source Software (OSS) Projects: Where Do We Stand? In Proceedings - 13th ACM/IEEE International Symposium on Empirical Software Engineering and Measurement, ESEM 2019 [8870179] (International Symposium on Empirical Software Engineering and Measurement; Vol. 2019-Septemer). IEEE Computer Society. https://doi.org/10.1109/ESEM.2019.8870179
Bosu, Amiangshu ; Sultana, Kazi Zakia. / Diversity and Inclusion in Open Source Software (OSS) Projects : Where Do We Stand?. Proceedings - 13th ACM/IEEE International Symposium on Empirical Software Engineering and Measurement, ESEM 2019. IEEE Computer Society, 2019. (International Symposium on Empirical Software Engineering and Measurement).
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abstract = "Background: As the area of computing has thrived over the years, the participation of women in computing declined. Currently women represent less than 24{\%} of the computing workforce and that number is declining. On the other hand, the ratios of women in Open Source Software (OSS) projects are even lower.Aims: The primary objective of this study is to determine the level of gender diversity among popular OSS projects and identify the presence of gender biases that may discourage females' participation.Method: On this goal, we mined the code review repositories of ten popular OSS projects. We used a semi-automated approach followed by a manual validation to identify the genders of the active contributors.Results: Our results suggest that lack of gender diversity remains an ongoing issue among all the ten projects as each of the projects had less than 10{\%} female developers. However, many of the projects also suffer from lack of inclusion of females to leadership positions. Although none of the projects suggest significant differences between male and female developers in terms of productivity based on three different measures, data from three out of the ten projects indicate technical biases against female developers with lower code acceptance rates as well as delayed feedback during code reviews. However, biases against females are not universal as majority of the projects do not discriminate against females. The two projects with the least ratios of female contributors as core developers showed the most biases against females.Conclusion: Based on our findings, we conclude that promoting and mentoring females to leadership positions may be an effective solution to foster gender diversity.",
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Bosu, A & Sultana, KZ 2019, Diversity and Inclusion in Open Source Software (OSS) Projects: Where Do We Stand? in Proceedings - 13th ACM/IEEE International Symposium on Empirical Software Engineering and Measurement, ESEM 2019., 8870179, International Symposium on Empirical Software Engineering and Measurement, vol. 2019-Septemer, IEEE Computer Society, 13th ACM/IEEE International Symposium on Empirical Software Engineering and Measurement, ESEM 2019, Porto de Galinhas, Pernambuco, Brazil, 19/09/19. https://doi.org/10.1109/ESEM.2019.8870179

Diversity and Inclusion in Open Source Software (OSS) Projects : Where Do We Stand? / Bosu, Amiangshu; Sultana, Kazi Zakia.

Proceedings - 13th ACM/IEEE International Symposium on Empirical Software Engineering and Measurement, ESEM 2019. IEEE Computer Society, 2019. 8870179 (International Symposium on Empirical Software Engineering and Measurement; Vol. 2019-Septemer).

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

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Bosu A, Sultana KZ. Diversity and Inclusion in Open Source Software (OSS) Projects: Where Do We Stand? In Proceedings - 13th ACM/IEEE International Symposium on Empirical Software Engineering and Measurement, ESEM 2019. IEEE Computer Society. 2019. 8870179. (International Symposium on Empirical Software Engineering and Measurement). https://doi.org/10.1109/ESEM.2019.8870179