16 Feb 2024

Hilary Lappin-Scott: Inspiring women to learn and lead

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Over the past few years, the EAIE Podcast has paid particular attention to the International Day of Women and Girls in Science, celebrated annually on 11 February. This day promotes the full and equal access and participation of females in the fields of science, technology, engineering, medicine and mathematics. It also serves as a reminder that women and girls play a critical role in the global science and technology communities and that their participation should be strengthened.

In this podcast episode, host Laura Rumbley is joined by Professor Hilary Lappin-Scott OBE who is a standout example of a successful female scientist. While she has served as President of FEMS, the Federation of European Microbiological Scientists, and is now an Honorary Distinguished Professor at Cardiff University (Wales) and Visiting Professor at Bangor University (Wales), she has faced real challenges as a woman scientist over the course of her career. Professor Lappin-Scott shares her own experiences, while also reflecting on the importance of the International Day of Women and Girls in Science, the positive power of mentorship, and what remains to fight for when it comes to equity for women in the world of science moving forward.

About Hilary Lappin-Scott

Professor Hilary Lappin-Scott OBE is Honorary Distinguished Professor at Cardiff University and Visiting Professor at Bangor University. She has served as President of the Federation of European Microbiology Societies (FEMS), President of the Microbiology Society and President of the International Society of Microbial Ecology (ISME), the only person to have held the presidency of all three of these organisations. She was previously the Senior Pro Vice Chancellor of Swansea University, leading the research and innovation strategy, while as a Professor in Environmental Microbiology at the University of Exeter she trained over 50 people to successful completion of research degrees in microbial ecology. In 2018, she was awarded an OBE (Order of the British Empire) in the 2018 New Year’s Honours List for services to Microbiology and the advancement of women in science, technology, engineering and maths. She has also received the WISE (Women in Science and Engineering) STEM Hero Award (2016) and Chwarae Teg 'STEM Pioneer' Award (2017).

Additional Resources

For further insights into the topics touched on in this episode, the following resources may be of interest:

→ United Nations: International Day of Women and Girls in Science

→ TEDx TALKS: MOVE OVER BOYS - Why we need more girls/women in STEM Careers

→ Nicole Williams and Helen Whitehead: Women changing the world of science

→ Expanding the roles of women in STEM

→ Gender inequality in higher education: lessons from Ireland