Data Shows a Higher Share of Males in Lane County’s Tech Sector

Data Shows a Higher Share of Males in Lane County’s Tech Sector

by Brian Rooney

August 29, 2017

Interest in encouraging more women to work in the tech sector has led to data requests showing the breakout of employment by gender. By any measure, Lane County’s tech sector has a higher share of males.

The tech sector in Lane County is defined by a group of industries at the four-digit North America Industry Code System (NAICS) code level that has been adopted by the Oregon Employment Department and the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

The Census Bureau’s Quarterly Workforce Indicators show that in the second quarter of 2016, Lane County’s tech sector was 63 percent male and 37 percent female, while overall employment in the county is evenly split between males and females. Looking back in time, there has been a slight but steady upward trend in the percentage of males in the tech sector, increasing from roughly 57 percent male in the early 1990s.

At the occupational level the disparity becomes more apparent. The Census Bureau’s American Community Survey (ACS) data shows that in computer and mathematical occupations in 2015 Lane County was roughly 76 percent male and 24 percent female. These percentages were roughly the same statewide and in the U.S.

The higher percentage of females in the industry data compared with the occupational data is likely due to other, nontechnical occupations at tech companies such as front office, finance, and marketing. It may also help to explain the tech sector industry trend towards a higher percentage of males in recent years since workplaces overall have become more technical.