Company officials cite an unfilled pipeline as an obstacle to recruitment; some observers see need for more aggressive recruiting.

Sidebar: Helpful Resources For Minority Scientists

TOO FEW: BIO president Carl Feldbaum cites the pipeline issue rather than discrimination as the main reason for small minority representation.
Scientists who are members of racial and ethnic minorities are underrepresented in the biotechnology industry, according to a variety of industry observers. Minority researchers agree with company representatives and career counselors that this disparity rarely if ever arises from conscious or overt discrimination, but they disagree on what, if anything, individual biotech companies should do about it.

While those in the industry say the problem is quite real, it is difficult to quantify. Large and small biotechnology companies approached by The Scientist declined to provide breakdowns on the racial and ethnic makeup of their scientific staffs. And the Washington, D.C.-based Biotechnology Industry Organization (BIO),...

Interested in reading more?

Become a Member of

Receive full access to digital editions of The Scientist, as well as TS Digest, feature stories, more than 35 years of archives, and much more!
Already a member?