Women are poorly represented in science, and in most areas of engineering, despite legal requirements for equal opportunity in many countries. Major reasons for this include a lack of opportunity for education, advanced training and meaningful employment. Even where these are present, women may have limited chances for advancement in spite of their capacity and competence.
Promoting women’s visibility is one way: recognising women’s contributions to science and helping them obtain collaborators by placing them on the world stage.
The L’Oréal–UNESCO For Women in Science programme, for example, has identified and funded outstanding female researchers around the world. And the Elsevier Foundation Awards for Early Career Women Scientists in the Developing World, given in conjunction with the Organization for Women in Science for the Developing World and TWAS (The World Academy of Sciences), offer a cash award along with networking opportunities.