Thursday, 8 March 2018
Women in Science: A Listening Session
by Wellcome Trust/DBT India Alliance (the India Alliance), 2018.
Summary: On November 16, 2017, the Wellcome Trust/DBT India Alliance (the India Alliance) and the U.S. Embassy, New Delhi, India hosted a listening session for research scientists, Government of India representatives, and science communicators to discuss challenges and obstacles faced by women in pursuing a career in scientific research. Obstacles to the advancement of women in research, including age limits, hiring practices, and implicit bias were discussed. The discussions led to a series of recommendations, including: (1) adding five years to the age limit for hiring new faculty; (2) requiring training on implicit and overt bias; (3) providing training in laboratory management and leadership skills for women; (4) adjusting fellowship regulations to allow consideration of maternity leave; (5) establishing forums where women can network and speak freely; (6) creating virtual platforms to allow women to remain connected to research during maternity leave; (7) providing transportation, mothers' room, daycare facilities and housing assistance; (8) developing avenues to facilitate the discussion with male colleagues, heads of institutions, and government representatives; and (9) increase the representation of women scientists in decision-making bodies both at an institutional and national level.