When we observe female students at primary school levels, we can see that they have the same interest and, of course, the same capabilities as boys when it comes to science. What happens later on so that the number of women who decide to go into science falls?
Today, in the International Day of Women and Girls in Science we want to try to answer this question. For that we have interviewed Marta Sánchez Cidoncha, a project leader at the R&D center CRIDA and one of the few female members of the project ISOBAR.
For her, one of the causes of this problem is the lack of female role models for girls to be appealed by Science: “media are not giving enough fame and publicity to today’s scientists”. She points at the need to emphasize much more the achievements of individual scientists because “amongst the new renowned scientists there will be men, but also inspiring women who will serve as models for the future generations of scientists”.
“There is certain shyness in standing out”
Leadership in science is another subject with room for improvement. Marta tells us that in the organizations she has worked for she has seen an increase in the number of women reaching leadership in science, both as technicians and as executives. “In the school of engineering where I studied we were just a few women amongst a majority of men; in my current organisation we are already even”, she claims. “This is a sign that we are progressing towards equality”.
However, in spite of the advance, it seems there is still a social heritage that keeps female scientists from feeling comfortable with leading positions: “there are many women in positions of low visibility and it seems there is certain shyness in standing out”, she adds.