Sunday, April 2, 2023

Soapbox program ready to empower women scientists

An event celebrating women academics in science is to be organized outside the state library in August as part of National Science Week.

12 inspiring female speakers from the worlds of Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) will share and share their knowledge with the public on 19 August at the first ever Soapbox Science event in Melbourne.

Soapbox Science is a new public outreach platform to promote women and non-binary scientists and the science they do. It turns the public sphere into an area for public education and scientific debate.

The STEM Sisters, a diverse group in Melbourne with the aim of empowering women in the STEM field, will be hosting a free event in the State Library courtyard between 2pm and 5pm.

STEM Sisters founder Ruwangi Fernando said the Australian STEM workforce accounts for less than 40 percent and even less for culturally diverse women.

“Australia needs a more diverse STEM population because technological and scientific innovation immensely benefits from diversity,” she said.

“Many Australian STEM organizations support women in STEM, but no specific organization in Australia supports STEM women of color – STEM Sisters was started to bridge this gap.”

Ms Fernando said that without diversity in science, there would be a loss of talent and knowledge, “therefore, the STEM sisters are committed to supporting diversity and providing a platform for women to be represented in STEM.”

“Given the rise of the COVID-19 pandemic, the push for effective science communication has become more important than ever.”

“These important and transferable skills are fundamental to building relationships with science and the public in order for researchers to inform, educate, and raise awareness of their work to a broad audience.”

The group will use its $10,000 grant, which it received earlier this year through the City of Melbourne’s 2022 Connected Communities Grant Program, to host the soapbox science event. ,

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Nation World News Desk
Nation World News Desk
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