UNESCO and the L’Oréal Foundation are preparing to honour five exceptional female scientists with the 2018 L’Oréal-UNESCO For Women in Science Awards at a ceremony on 22 March at UNESCO’s Headquarters in Paris.
The ceremony will follow a major scientific conference, organized by the L’Oréal Foundation and UNESCO on 21 March. These events will recognize leading women scientists and shine a spotlight on 15 talented young female scientists. They will also provide an opportunity to celebrate the 20th anniversary of the For Women in Science programme.
Women continue to be under-represented in public and professional life, particularly in science, where the “glass ceiling” is still a reality. Today, only 28% of scientists are women and only 3% of science Nobel Prizes have been awarded to women since the awards began in 1901.
Despite this, there are many eminent women scientists, and raising their profile is vital to promoting greater gender equality in science. Every year for the past 20 years, UNESCO and the L’Oréal Foundation have recognized five exceptional female scientists and taken action to improve the balance of women and men in science.
Each of the five laureates will receive a prize of €100,000 and be honored for her contribution in the fields of medicine, palaeontology, molecular biology, ecology and developmental biology.
Over the last 20 years, the L’Oréal-UNESCO For Women in Science programme has raised the profile of 102 laureates and supported more than 3,000 young female scientists, helping them benefit from increased recognition within the scientific community. Three of these laureates have received science Nobel Prizes .
In order to further promote these women in science, the L’Oréal-UNESCO For Women in Science programme is raising public awareness of their achievements. It has launched an international communications campaign in seven international airports (Paris, New York, Beijing, London, Dubai, Sao Paulo and Johannesburg) and on the streets of Paris, in partnership with JCDecaux and Aéroports de Paris.
THE 2018 L’OREAL-UNESCO FOR WOMEN IN SCIENCE LAUREATES
AFRICA AND THE ARAB STATES
Professor Heather ZAR
Professor and Chair, Department of Paediatrics & Child Health, Red Cross War Memorial Children’s Hospital
Director SAMRC Unit, University of Cape Town, South Africa
For establishing a cutting-edge research programme on pneumonia, tuberculosis and asthma, saving the lives of many children worldwide.
Professor Mee-Mann CHANG
Professor, Institute of Vertebrate Palaeontology and Palaeoanthropology
Member of Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing, China
For her pioneering work on fossil records leading to insights on how aquatic vertebrates adapted to life on land.
Professor Dame Caroline DEAN
Professor, John Innes Centre, Norwich Research Park, United Kingdom
For her groundbreaking research on how plants adapt to their surroundings and climate change, leading to new ways to improve crops.
Professor Amy T. AUSTIN
Professor, IFEVA-CONICET, Facultad de Agronomía, Universidad de Buenos Aires, Argentina
For her remarkable contributions to understanding terrestrial ecosystem ecology in natural and human-modified landscapes.
Professor Janet ROSSANT
Senior Scientist, The Hospital for Sick Children, Toronto, Canada
University Professor, University of Toronto, Canada
President, Gairdner Foundation, Canada
For her outstanding research that helped to understand better how tissues and organs are formed in the developing embryo.
THE 2018 L’OREAL-UNESCO FOR WOMEN IN SCIENCE INTERNATIONAL RISING TALENTS
Over the last 20 years, the L’Oréal Foundation and UNESCO have supported 3,022 talented young female scientists through research fellowships. These L’Oréal-UNESCO For Women in Science fellowships are awarded annually at national and regional ceremonies in 117 countries.
National and regional fellowships are awarded to 275 young women scientists each year. Out of these 275, the International Rising Talents programme targets the most promising 15 of these scientists.
The 15 young female talents honoured in 2018 are:
AFRICA AND THE ARAB STATES
- Dr. Areej Abuhammad, Levant & Egypt
A crystal for a cure
- Danielle Twilley, South Africa
Targeting angiogenesis for the treatment of melanoma
- Dr. Hanifa Taher Al Blooshi, United Arab Emirates
Sustainable products for major oil spills clean-up
- Dr. Ibtissem Guefrachi, Tunisia
Plants point to ways of overcoming antibiotic resistance
- Dr. Weang Kee Ho, Malaysia
Targeted screening for breast cancer
- Dr. Hiep Nguyen, Viet Nam
A 21st century first-aid kit
- Dr. Yukiko Ogawa, Japan
Lightening the load: next-generation structural materials
- Dr. Radha Boya, United Kingdom
Making tiny pipes for transport and filtration
- Dr. Agnieszka Gajewicz, Poland
Safety first in developing new materials
- Dr. Anna Kudryavtseva, Russia
The mysteries behind tumour malignancy
- Associate Prof. Duygu Sag, Turkey
Triggering the immune system to fight cancer
- Dr. Ai Ing Lim, France
The origins of immune system intelligence
- Dr. Selene Lizbeth Fernandez Valverde, Mexico
The secrets of genomic “dark matter”
- Dr. Rafaela Salgado Ferreira, Brazil
Computing power in the service of neglected diseases
- Dr. Anela Choy, United States of America
Ocean food webs and human societies
CONTACT – UNESCO
Laetitia Kaci / firstname.lastname@example.org / +33 (0) 1 45 68 17 72
UNESCO for Women in Science Programme: http://bit.ly/1LigNIQ
CONTACTS – L’OREAL FOUNDATION
Ludivine DESMONTS-MORNET / email@example.com / +33 (0)6 10 57 41 74
Alix BONNET / firstname.lastname@example.org / +33 (0)6 99 45 86 45