The World

Why do we collect data on gender?


At Love to Ride we collect data on gender so that we can reflect on our progress towards our goal of being the world's most fun and effective cycling encouragement platform. 

We wish to understand whether strategies to support genders traditionally underrepresented in the cycling industry are working. As part of this, it is important to track how the barriers preventing individuals from riding more often or for transportation purposes differ amongst different genders, as there is indeed a gender gap within cycling which we are working hard to bridge. To do this, we need to collect gender data.

For example, our research has found that on average women are three times more likely than men to report that they lack confidence riding. By tailoring our support to focus on increasing and improving confidence, we can help these women overcome their main barriers and ride more often.

The gender response options on Love to Ride are ‘female’, ‘male’, ‘non-binary’ as well as ‘prefer not to say’. When using either the term ‘female’ (like on our gendered leaderboards) or the term ‘women’ (like in the statement “let’s get more women riding bikes”) we are referring to cis women, trans women and anyone who chooses the term ‘female’ to best define their gender. We believe this approach to collecting gender data is more appropriate and less exclusionary than collecting data on sex. This is important to help us reach our goal of being a platform that can encourage everyone to realise the benefits of riding. 

We are aware that the terms ‘female’ and ‘male’ are also used when referring to sex. However, our view is that this is not the only use of these terms and we support the view that ‘male’ and ‘female’ can be used alongside ‘non-binary’ when reporting gender. Because we have younger users on the site, it could also be inappropriate to use the terms ‘man’ and ‘woman’.

We understand the way in which we collect gender data includes compromises. However, we’re aiming to strike the right balance between recognising and including people of all genders whilst also only collecting data we can actually use in a meaningful way. Through this, we are also mitigating edge case risks like unintentionally collecting GDPR protected special category data via a free text option. 

At Love to Ride we’re always evolving and updating our processes. We continually reflect on our current practices to ensure they are fit for purpose and feedback from our riders is always valued. We take equality, diversity, equity and inclusion very seriously. We have a team that regularly meets to advance our agenda of supporting diverse communities on their journey to biking more. If you have any questions or feedback we’d welcome you to get in touch at support@lovetoride.net.

To find out more information on how our gender data is used, check out these blog posts

Supporting Women to Ride

Bridging the Gender Gap

We’re shifting gears: Share of women riding continues to increase

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