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United Nations International Day of Women and Girls in Science

11th February is the United Nations International Day of Women and Girls in Science.

According to the UN “International days are occasions to educate the public on issues of concern, to mobilize political will and resources to address global problems, and to celebrate and reinforce achievements of humanity.”

This day is planned to recognize the contributions made by women and girls to advancing understanding in science and technology, with a particular theme for 2021 of Women Scientists at the forefront of the fight against COVID-19.

A UNESCO Zoom Webinar will be held on 11th with speakers and a panel discussion. This will both showcase some of the work led by women in the fight against COVID-19, and highlight the often negative impact of COVID-19 on woman scientists and the related contribution to the widening of the gender gap in science.

The Faculty of Engineering and Informatics at the University of Bradford, in partnership with the University Gender Staff Forum, is marking the day by highlighting the stories of some of our students and staff, asking them why they chose to pursue scientific study and what they hope for the future of women and girls in science. 

We support equal access to scientific careers for women, noting that gender equality in science is important for the empowerment of women and also vital for humanity – we cannot achieve our potential if we allow barriers for half of the world’s population to be in place.

We need to utilise the skills, experience, and diverse input of all scientists if we are to benefit fully. More support is needed for women working in science, and more encouragement for girls to consider studying STEM.

Sharing our stories can help girls to understand why it is important, how they can personally benefit by studying STEM subjects and how their involvement can provide positive outcomes for others across the world.