Best Cities for Women in Tech

The regions that rank highest may not be what you think.

STEM (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics) careers are among the most promising in terms of growth and pay. Yet women continue to be underrepresented in technology fields, with only 25 percent holding computing jobs. Among the reasons for the disparity: unsatisfying workplace experiences prompt many women to leave these fields.

But some locations are friendlier to women tech workers than others. Financial technology company SmartAsset released “The Best Cities for Women in Tech in 2018.” To come up with the list, researchers looked at income after housing costs, women’s representation in the workforce, percent growth in employment, and the gender pay gap. Here are some of the surprising findings.

Silicon Valley flunks. While California is often considered the tech capital of the United States, it doesn’t make the grade for women. Female tech workers in the state are underpaid and underrepresented compared to men. Only one California city—Fremont—ranked in the top 15 cities for women in tech.

Consistency counts. Certain cities score well every year. Washington, DC, and Kansas City, Missouri, held spots one and two, respectively, for the last four years.

East Coast reigns. Five East Coast cities make the top 10: Washington, DC (one); Baltimore (three); Philadelphia (four); Arlington, Virginia (six); and New York (nine).

What gender pay gap? Looking for a model city for gender pay equality? In Kansas City, Missouri, women in tech make 2 percent more than their male counterparts.

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