Medical technology is one of the technology areas that mostly attract women. About 50 % of the students at the master program in biomedical engineering at Chalmers are females and the number of female PhD students is above average in medical technology faculties. However, the proportion of women among senior researchers is low. As a part of the EU project “Female role models and partners”, run by MedTech West in collaboration with Chalmers, Women in SciencE (WiSE) is a project born with the intention to take actions in supporting young female researchers.
Our vision is to foster collaborations by creating a dynamic and inspiring network for women in science. Furthermore we aim at providing extra support and motivation to women who want to move forward in their academic career and want to share their difficulties in doing so. We will invite national and international senior female researchers in medical technology to serve as role models and favour large scale networking. We will actively work for a balance between men and women among senior researchers.
The active parties in the project (MedTechWest and Signals and Systems) will aim at achieving measurable goals for a more gender equal environment, such as research applications, collaborations and patents from female researchers. Effects on the gender equality will come by clarifying the importance of female researchers’ and clinicians’ experiences. Planned activities are seminars where different aspects of the academic life for women are discussed. Also young female researchers are given the possibility to invite female role models in their research area. They will both get a chance to initiate collaborations and to get motivation to continue an academic career.
In 2016, WiSE arranged a half-day seminar about equal opportunities at Chalmers in Runan. The seminar presented a recent study, ”Attractive academia?”, by Helena Stensöta and Sara Hun from the Department of Political Science at the University of Gothenburg, as well as current equality work at Chalmers. An interview study with PhD students and supervisors at 4 departments at Chalmers on the hurdles and motivations of doing an academic career.
Sabine Reinfeldt, Associate professor at Signals and Systems, Chalmers University of Technology
Hana Dobsicek Trefna, Assistant professor at Signals and Systems, Chalmers University of Technology
Jennifer Alvén, PhD student at Signals and Systems, Chalmers University of Technology
Yvonne Jonsson, Communicator, at Signals and Systems, Chalmers University of Technology
Helene Lindström, Communicator, Medtech West