Women in Science

engineer with computerIn the Treaty of the European Union, articles 2 and 3 establish equality between women and men as an objective of the Community. Endorsing this policy, this EST programme contributes to improving the gender balance in the aeronautical profession in the ERA, where women are currently under-represented. The EST programme monitors the participation of women against the specific objective of achieving a 50% or higher percentage of women in the EST cohort.

The host organisations applies a policy of equal opportunities, in particular between men and women, concerning access to training.

Women are currently under-represented in aerodynamic research. This EST proposal aims to contribute towards redressing this under-representation by (i) advertising the EST fellowships, to encourage the participation of women, and (ii) mentoring female candidates through a dedicated peer-support system, to maximise the retention of EST female students for the full-term of the training programme.

The female EST trainees is paired with professional women engineers, working in industry or in the academia.

Some interesting links:

European Commission, Guide for Proposers, Marie Curie Actions, Marie Curie Host Fellowships For Early Stage Research Training (EST), Annex 4: Integrating the gender dimension in FP6 projects, September 2004.

Female researcher experiences

engineer adjusts equipment"I am an assistant professor at the University of Toulouse in the Department of Mechanics. I spend a part of my time to teach at the University and another part to do research to the Institute of fluid mechanics of Toulouse (IMFT). It was very natural for me to opt for studies of sciences because my favorite domains at school were the mathematics and the physics. I have never thought that I would have more difficulties than men to pursue such studies, and I was right. It is true that fewer women than men have scientific careers, but they succeed in it as well as their male colleagues."
P.C., Maître de conférences, Université de Toulouse, Paul Sabatier

"My current position as a PhD student in aerodynamics is the result of a long trip which has brought me through different countries and from a generic engineering background to a very specialised domain.
The adventure started in my home city, Barcelona, where I began my studies in Mechanical Engineering. My natural curiosity for different cultures and an Erasmus scholarship led me to Goteborg, Sweden, where I undertook a Master in Fluid Mechanics and Turbulence and I finished my degree from Spain. Aerodynamics (and engineering in general) in an area where women are still under-represented. I did not enter this field due to my interest for mathematics or technology, but specially for their applications to improve the society's quality of life and to protect the environment.
After my Masters, I felt interested in research related to the environmental applications of engineering, and I applied for a position in the AeroTraNet project in Toulouse, France. I saw this position as an opportunity to work in an international environment, in a big project, in a coordinated team. Working in a new topic is a daily challenge involving obstacles, deadlines, administrative issues, and maintaining motivation. A PhD is not only a degree, but a proof of determination and persistence."
L.M.G., Doctorant, IMFT, Toulouse

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