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How to keep women (and men) in science

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Prof. Dr. Petra Rudolf Zernike Institute for Advanced Materials University of Groningen, e-mail:

The EU report on Women in Science identifies different risks which can result in the drop out of women from academic life at different career stages: at the beginning (PhD phase) it is mainly the lack of support from the supervisor, in the postdoc phase the problem of reconciling career and motherhood is most acute, then the risk shifts to lack of career expectations and even at the associate/full professor level there remains a risk due to isolation and exclusion. I shall discuss these issues based on studies from Europe, the U.S.A. and Japan. Based on the trends which emerge from these studies, I shall also suggest some measures to be taken to ensure that women stay in science. From this it will be obvious that all measures which favour women in science are good for men as well.

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