Promoting workplace equality in materials science
To help ensure equal and inclusive work conditions in STEM, the Graphene Flagship is holding a career event as part of its Diversity in Graphene programme.
The Diversity in Graphene Career Event 2021 is a digital event, taking place over two days, 8 to 9 March 2021. The first day will include sessions on topics from equal opportunities in STEM, to the experiences of diverse Graphene Flagship speakers working in industry and academia. On the second day, Springboard Consultancy, a company specialised in diversity and inclusion training, will deliver an interactive workshop on the best strategies for working and networking from home.
Initially launched in September 2020, Diversity in Graphene expands upon the remit of the former Women in Graphene initiative by the Graphene Flagship — to strive for the inclusion of all minority and marginalised groups in science, including people with disabilities, people of colour and the LGBTQ+ community.
The Diversity in Graphene Career Event 2021 builds on the success of the Women in Graphene 2020 career workshop, the Graphene Flagship’s first virtual conference, which was held at the start of the pandemic.
Speakers at this year’s event include Polina Kuzhir, a Marie Skłodowska-Curie fellow in the Institute of Photonics, at Graphene Flagship Associate Member the University of Eastern Finland, who will discuss the role of international cooperation and mobility plays in research teams and career development. Ana Helman, Science Officer at the European Science Foundation – Science Connect, will talk about alternative careers in science.
In addition, Marie Louise Sunde, CEO at Equality Check (Norway), and Maria Sangiuliano, CEO and co-founder at SmartVenice (Italy) will explain how companies and research institutes can improve diversity and inclusion.
Researchers at different stages of their academic careers, from PhD to tenure, an industry CTO and an entrepreneur, will talk about their professional challenges and choices at the “Study Struggle Succeed” panel discussion. And Beenish Siddique, CEO and founder of AEH Innovative Hydrogel Limited (UK), will share her journey to becoming an entrepreneur.
The interactive workshop on 9 March will equip attendees to build networks and work effectively from home, helping them to progress their careers despite the disruption of the COVID-19 pandemic.
“To make science more diverse, we need to support people at all stages of their lives and careers,” commented Letizia Diamante, science writer and coordinator of ‘Diversity in Graphene’ at the Graphene Flagship. “The Diversity in Graphene Career Event 2021 aims to create an inclusive space to share the experiences, advice and ambitions of people working in the community of graphene and layered materials, particularly women and those from minority and under-represented groups.”
Registration is free to everyone, whether or not they are part of a partner institute of the Graphene Flagship.
Another event in the Diversity in Graphene calendar took place on 11 February 2021, the International Day of Women and Girls in Science. The event, an online Wikipedia Edit-a-thon, was aimed to increase the representation and visibility of women and underrepresented groups in STEM, by updating, improving, or creating biographies of notable women in science, on the fifth most visited website in the world.