Useful links



Athena SWAN

Ada Lovelace Day celebrating women in science

Facebook page for sharing material related to Women in research. (The page is publicly accessible, so you do not need a Facebook account to open it.)

Many of use have unconscious biases, e.g. about gender. To test your own unconscious bias do one of the tests from Project Implicit designed by scientists from Harvard University. This recent piece shows how the results vary across nations, with a strong link between the percentage of female scientists and gender stereotyping: The more female science majors, the weaker implicit gender-science stereotypes.

Also, see Overcoming Unconscious Bias training, which is now available online through The University of Edinburgh.


The University of Edinburgh

Equality and Diversity in the College of Medicine and Veterinary Medicine

Equality and Diversity at the University of Edinburgh

Anyone who works for the University should really do the following (short) online training modules: Diversity in the Workplace Equality & Diversity (E&D) and Equality Impact Assessment.

The University of Edinburgh now also has Overcoming Unconscious Bias training online. Once you’ve done the training, you can test your implicit biases through these Project Implicit tests designed by scientists from Harvard University.


Meeting reports

In early 2014 Mohini Gray (a clinical academic in CIR) took part in the Aurora Leadership Programme, intended to develop women with the potential for leadership. Here she describes her experience.
Vitae Research Staff Conference, Bristol November 13th 2014 – Patrick Hadoke
Part-time Researcher Conference, Dundee August 21st 2014 – Patrick Hadoke


Relevant publications

It still appears that career progression for women does not work the same way as it does for men, e.g. the Equality Challenge Unit released a new report on Equality in Higher Education. Read the Guardian comment: “Equality Challenge Unit figures reveal a dismal picture for female academics with the continued dominance of men in the sector”

Tapping all our Talents: an RSE report into women in STEMM subjects

Equality Challenge Unit, Mentoring: progressing women’s careers in higher education

PNAS paper: Gender bias in recruitment in science, with associated blog posts/media coverage of the paper

Nature article, Career gaps: Maternity muddle, about maternity leave and the way it impacts on a career in research

Discover Magazine: Scientists, Your Gender Bias Is Showing

The Guardian: Women in science, you have nothing to fear but your own subconscious

The Guardian: Why women leave academia

Wellcome Trust study “Do Babies Matter?” cites more career hurdles for females than for male peers.

In this returner’s guide for researchers the Wellcome Trust gives useful advice about how to get back into research after a break.


Talks and films

A Chemical Imbalance: a short film, a book, and ultimately a call for action, highlighting some of the obstacles still faced by women in STEMM and academia. Polly Arnold, from the University of Edinburgh Chemistry Department, has launched a video and a book she has put together to coincide with the tercentenary of the Chemistry Department and the Athena SWAN gold award to Chemistry. Polly has said: “Commissioned by the Royal Society Rosalind Franklin award, /A Chemical Imbalance/ is a short film, a book, and ultimately a call for action, highlighting some of the obstacles still faced by women in STEMM and academia. With enough exposure we hope /A Chemical Imbalance/ can make a positive contribution to the way people consider gender, feminism and the challenges we all share in achieving equality.” Watch the film on the Chemical Imbalance Website.

This short film on the Royal Society website explains unconscious bias in a helpful way; it really is an excellent introduction!
On 17th September 2015 a special event was organised by Martyn Pickersgill (Edinburgh Medical School) with presentations from two guest speakers Euan Adie (founder of and Paul Naish (publisher at Taylor & Francis). They introduced altmetrics and discussed how it can benefit academics. You can view their presentations Career Progression, Equality & the Role of Altmetrics here.
In the spirit of Ada Lovelace Day, Genetic Engineering & Biotechnology News compiled a video portraying 25 pioneering women of science.
The Physiological Society brings together over 3000 scientists working to understand biological systems. In July 2013 they held a three-part meeting on Women in Science in Birmingham. The talks were titled “Why sponsoring and mentorship work”, “Juggling Balls – Family and Physiology” and “What glass ceiling?”. These talks are available both on the Physiological Society website and through YouTube.
Wider connections: This beautiful video “In my lifetime” made by director Alison Ramsay shows the enormous progress made, and highlights what we already know, that Women Can Achieve Anything.


Women in Medicine

Women in Medicine – The Future

Women in Medicine – A Future Assured

Views on female medics and part-time working



My Career Hub

Although the web-site is geared towards ‘proper’ jobs for students, they are happy to advertise small, local jobs like child-care over the summer or babysitters in your area etc. The experiences of members of the Athena SWAN panels has been very positive, a lot of applicants with good references and full Disclosure, first aid certificates etc.

To search for a Day Nursery with full day care check out

The free newsletter “Families” has an Edinburgh edition that has a lot of useful listings relating to childcare. In particular, the editions in the run-up to school holidays usually have a lot of suggestions and adverts for holiday clubs