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Empowering Change Agents

Seeds of Change high school circle group photo

The Lab's research on Empowering Change Agents consists of two research projects, each of which focuses on how gender inequality is understood and, in particular, how this relates to women’s experiences navigating critical life course and leadership transitions: Seeds of Change and Voice and Influence Circles. This work aims to uncover insights that will enable us to better create transformative and empowering educational experiences, such that women are not only achieving and persisting, but are also contributing to the creation of more inclusive organizations and institutions.

Seeds of Change 

This initiative provides innovative training and support to young women in STEM as they transition through high school and college to successful technology careers. Seeds of Change partners Stanford undergraduates in technology disciplines with high school students interested in advancing the participation of women and girls in STEM, and provides an integrated curriculum of mentoring, training and skills development. The Seeds of Change research examines a gendered approach to leadership education and investigates how leadership concepts are internalized and enacted.

Learn more about Seeds of Change

Voice and Influence Circles

Women contend with both explicit and implicit forms of gender bias on the job, making it difficult to attain leadership positions. Scholars have pointed out that certain kinds of women’s leadership development programs can play a critical role in pushing for gender equity inside organizations since they have the potential to change not only individual actions but to also address larger systemic issues. This research investigates the results of a three-year peer cohort based women’s empowerment program. Our analysis focuses on the ways in which increased awareness of gender dynamics occur, how awareness translates into action, and where both awareness and change remain limited.

View the Voice and Influence videos