The barriers faced by women in games production have been firmly established, including well-documented harassment and material forms of structural discrimination such as gender pay gaps. At the same time, the explanation that homogeneity in the games industry is due to a ‘leaky pipeline’ between training and the workforce persists, extending discourse familiar from the history of computing. Games higher education, the presumed feeder for diverse talent, remains underexplored despite the increasingly compulsory nature of university degrees in job postings. This article addresses the gap by exploring the experiences and perspectives of students studying games subjects in five UK universities. Based on thematic analysis of interviews, I argue that efforts to ‘get in’ to exclusionary tech spaces based on discourses of feminine lack fail to account for how these environments require marginalized people to develop strategies for coping with exclusionary norms to ‘stay in’.
Harvey, A. (2021). Making the grade: Feminine lack, inclusion, and coping strategies in digital games higher education. New Media and Society. https://doi.org/10.1177/1461444820986831