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Women in Academic Biosciences, a South African Landscape The South African landscape Women in Academic Biosciences A global look at Women’s Leadership.

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Presentation on theme: "Women in Academic Biosciences, a South African Landscape The South African landscape Women in Academic Biosciences A global look at Women’s Leadership."— Presentation transcript:

1 Women in Academic Biosciences, a South African Landscape The South African landscape Women in Academic Biosciences A global look at Women’s Leadership in Biotechnology Research A global look at Women’s Leadership in Biotechnology Research 1 Ms G Loots, 2 Prof P Terblanche and 2 Ms H van Zyl 1 SA National Department of Science and Technology 2 SA Medical Research Council

2 Women in Academic Biosciences, a South African Landscape Outline Setting the scene – the National Biotechnology Audit Policy framework and National System of Innovation Biotechnology programmes South African statistics Female role models Conclusion Recommendations

3 Women in Academic Biosciences, a South African Landscape National Biotechnology Audit, setting the scene South Africa is the only mega-country in Africa and one of 14 in the world The main instruments for the implementation of the National Biotechnology Strategy are the four Regional Innovation Centres: Cape Biotech, BioPAD, ECoBio, and PlantBio - the National Bioinformatics Network and the Public Understanding of Biotechnology Programme. The 2007 DST Ten Year Plan sets the vision that South Africa should be “among the global top ten nations in the world in terms of the pharmaceutical, nutraceutical, flavour, fragrance and biopesticide industries” by by the SA Dept of Science and Technology (DST) in 2007

4 Women in Academic Biosciences, a South African Landscape Policy Framework South Africa has several Acts and Policies 2001: National Biotechnology Strategy 2006: National Nano- technology Strategy 1996: White paper on Science and Technology There are several other enabling and supporting Acts.

5 Women in Academic Biosciences, a South African Landscape National System of Innovation The intellectual framework for policy is the National System for Innovation (NSI) It focuses on the role of technology in economic growth and supports innovation and technology diffusion.

6 Women in Academic Biosciences, a South African Landscape Capacity Building Programmes enabled through policies SA Reference Group on Women in Science and Technology Women in Science Awards NRF: Thuthuka Programme and Women-in-Research project, 2001 National Science and Technology Awards Tshumisano Technology Station Programme to name a few …

7 Women in Academic Biosciences, a South African Landscape Women in Academia 1992 – 2001: A marked shift in enrolments in higher education Women in Science, Engineering and Technology in South Africa Centre for Research on Science and Technology, Stellenbosch University. Report to the DST.

8 Women in Academic Biosciences, a South African Landscape Post-graduate Statistics Women in Science, Engineering and Technology in South Africa Centre for Research on Science and Technology, Stellenbosch University. Report to the DST.

9 Women in Academic Biosciences, a South African Landscape Women representation in Scientific Domains In 2001, female Doctoral students were best represented in the Health Sciences with 47% of all Doctoral enrolments and 49% of all Doctoral graduations in that year. By contrast, 69% of Doctoral enrolments and graduations in the Natural Sciences & Engineering were amongst men. Women in Science, Engineering and Technology in South Africa Centre for Research on Science and Technology, Stellenbosch University. Report to the DST.

10 Women in Academic Biosciences, a South African Landscape Publication Outputs Despite the growth in the numbers of female staff in higher education institutions and government SETI’s, less than one third of active publishing scientists were women. Since 1990 women scientists’ contribution has increased – albeit in small increments – from 16% in 1990 to 23% in Women in Science, Engineering and Technology in South Africa Centre for Research on Science and Technology, Stellenbosch University. Report to the DST.

11 Women in Academic Biosciences, a South African Landscape Grants by NRF and MRC Women in Science, Engineering and Technology in South Africa Centre for Research on Science and Technology, Stellenbosch University. Report to the DST. Between , the vast majority of rated scientists in all categories in the Natural Sciences & Engineering were men.

12 Women in Academic Biosciences, a South African Landscape Biotechnology in SA The total number of employees in the biotechnology active firms exceeded 72800, of those 2051 were involved with biotechnology related activities (up from 1800 during 2004). Previously Disadvantaged Individuals (PDIs) were 59% and females 52%. Female = 52% Male = 48% National Biotechnology Audit Biotechnology Use and Development in SA. Dept. of Science and Technology.

13 Women in Academic Biosciences, a South African Landscape Biotechnology Audit, MRC Situational analysis , Prof Petro Terblanche and Dr Martie van der Walt, MRC Female leaders TB Epidemiology and Intervention Research Unit – Dr Karin Weyer (Director) MRC/UCT Research Group for Receptor Biology - Dr Colleen A. Flanagan (Co- Director) Molecular Mycobacteriology Research Unit - Prof Valerie Mizrahi (Director)

14 Women in Academic Biosciences, a South African Landscape Female Role Models Leading women in Biosciences / Biotechnology Prof Himla Soodyall Prof Brenda Wingfield Prof Jennifer Thompson

15 Women in Academic Biosciences, a South African Landscape Conclusion SA policy framework There exists an enabling environment through the DST Gaps Not information on women in biotechnology Not enough current research on gender equality Scoreboard Does not exist on a national level with indicators to measure progress and evaluate projects

16 Women in Academic Biosciences, a South African Landscape Recommendations Review current initiatives for their Appropriateness Successes and outputs to implement interventions Create and maintain a database of women in biosciences Girls and young women Vertically integrate initiatives into high school level Provide gender-specific performance incentives Support women role models and mentoring schemes The workplace Retain women in bioscience jobs via professional development, career advancement, networking

17 Women in Academic Biosciences, a South African Landscape THANK YOU Ms Glaudina Loots, Director: Health Innovation, SA National Dept of Science and Technology Prof Petro Terblanche, Executive Director: Technology and Innovation, SA Medical Research Council Ms Hendra van Zyl, Division Manager: Web and Media Technologies, SA Medical Research Council


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