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Women in Science: pioneers of ground-breaking discoveries

Women have been involved in Science since ancient times and have made important contributions throughout its development.

For sure we will remember names such as Rosalind Franklin discoverer of the structure of the DNA or Marie Curie first woman to win two Nobel Prizes, but following the time-line, there are many more to examine.

“Even today, in the 21st century, women and girls are being side-lined in science-related fields due to their gender. Women need to know that they have a place in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics and that they have a right to share in scientific progress.” - Audrey Azoulay, UNESCO Director-General.

What happened to Rosalind Franklin is commonly known as the Matilda effect, a bias toward recognizing the accomplishments of female scientists whose work is credited to their male co-workers [5].

According to UNESCO Institute for Statistics (UIS) data (2019) [6], <30% of researchers worldwide are women, and although nearly half of the science undergraduates are female, just 4% of women scientists hold positions of leadership in research institutions. In the STEM fields (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics) especially, women continue to be underrepresented.

History, teaches us the remarkable role that women had in scientific innovation; thus gender equality must be promoted to obtain sustainable development.

Established on the 22nd of December 2015 by the UN General Assembly, International Day of Women and Girls in Science is celebrated on the 11th of February and recognizes the fundamental role that women cover in Science and Technology.

By Costanza Fratini


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