Women have much to contribute to the worlds of science and technology, and the world is poorer for women’s historical exclusion from such scientific endeavors. Although many industries exhibit gender discrepancies and continue to be shaped by sexism (e.g., banking, farming, mining, trucking, engineering, etc.), no other industry features so predominantly in our future-oriented visions for humanity as does science, and particularly space science. For women working in the male-dominated global space industry, space is a female frontier with a celestial ceiling. The United Nations (UN) reports that, in 2016, only 20% of workers in the space industry were women, and these figures had not improved in three decades. Women cannot defy the gravity of their situation without institutional change and a dramatic shift in cultural attitudes around gender. Science and human rights are linked; participation in science can improve a woman’s education and independence, life opportunities, status in society, and basic human rights. On Earth, patriarchal ideologies punctuate daily life, but space presents a chance for humanity to start a new chapter.

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Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 4.0 License.