As our society tackles the grand challenges, diversity in science and engineering is more important than ever. Gender diverse teams lead to better problem solving in science  and increased cultural diversity leads to innovation gains in engineering and design sectors . However, much of the gender research in engineering has an implicit liberal feminism theoretical foundation, where the goal is to ensure equal rights, opportunities, and treatment of women . We need to go beyond just getting more excluded identities in the room.
Over the last decade, there has been increasing research to understand and address the deeper and fundamental problems about the culture of engineering education and the engineering profession . Researchers have critically questioned how the narratives within engineering education construct and define what is “engineering” . It is evident we need to understand the embedded culture of engineering and how this presents a barrier to diversity. Specifically, this research will take a critical look at engineering design, and discourse used in publications on engineering design.
Many scholars see design as our guiding star where it is the foundation of engineering. However, the structured nature of the design process leaves little room for creativity in how design problems are approached. Design processes are generally structured by the “matrix of domination: white supremacy, heteropatriarchy, capitalism, and settler colonialism” [6, p. 2]. Thus, using a systematic literature review, I will review the top cited publications on engineering design from this century. I will use discourse analysis through poststructuralist feminist lens informed by the concept of gendered organizations, an approach modeled off Laura Parson’s critical analysis of STEM syllabi . By looking at the discourse and language used in publications, my objective is to gain insight into underlying regulations, power, knowledge, and invisible inequalities [7, 8]. This research will provide new insight into the field of engineering education, growing and extending the work that other feminist engineering scholars have accomplished.
 Nielsen, M. W., Alegria, S., Börjeson, L., Etzkowitz, H., Falk-Krzesinski, H. J., Joshi, A., ... & Schiebinger, L. (2017). Opinion: Gender diversity leads to better science. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 114(8), 1740-1742.
 Niebuhr, A. (2010). Migration and innovation: Does cultural diversity matter for regional R&D activity? Papers in Regional Science, 89(3), 563-585.
 Beddoes, K. (2011). Engineering education discourses on underrepresentation: Why problematization matters. International Journal of Engineering Education, 27(5), 1117.
 Riley, D., Pawley, A. L., Tucker, J., & Catalano, G. D. (2009). Feminisms in engineering education: Transformative possibilities. National Women's Studies Association Journal, 21-40.
 Pawley, A. L. (2009). Universalized narratives: Patterns in how faculty members define “engineering”. Journal of Engineering Education, 98(4), 309-319.
 Costanza-Chock, S. (2018). Design Justice: Towards an Intersectional Feminist Framework for Design Theory and Practice. Proceedings of the Design Research Society 2018.
 Parson, L. (2016). Are STEM syllabi gendered? A feminist critical discourse analysis. The Qualitative Report, 21(1), 102-116.
 Lerman, S. (2009). Pedagogy, discourse, and identity. Mathematical relationships in education: Identities and participation, 147-155.
Are you a researcher? Would you like to cite this paper?
Visit the ASEE document repository at
for more tools and easy citations.