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03 newsletter 2013

Read about: • DEWIS • activities of DEWIS (& others) • agenda • women TU Delft • career opportunities for women in science and engineering • work-life balance • gender stereotypes

Impressions of the DEWIS event “Design, technology and ethics” and dewis award The DEWIS network hosted its annual event on the 8th of October 2013. It was an event about “Design, Technology and Ethics, the two lectures (Anne Nigten and Elisa Giaccardi) were about this theme.


DEWIS chair Prof. Isabel Arends opened the event. She spoke shortly about the history, mission and its goals. Prof. Karel Luyben, Rector Magnificus of TU Delft, spoke about the Delft Technology Fellowship, that is open now for the second and last time to women scientists, currently not employed at TU Delft. This fellowship helps accelerating the increase of top women scientists at TU Delft, an important aim of the university. lectures Dr. Anne Nigten spoke in her lecture “Creative Patches In Co-creation processes” about creative projects in Rotterdam. She spoke about design courses at secondary vocational level, to implementation of a creative project at the Blaak Library. The creative project, intended to improve social interaction, illustrated how this interaction between the participants got started with assignments through mobile devices. Prof. Elisa Giaccardi opted a more philosophical approach; in her lecture “Things We Value” she spoke about changing values and how she used a meta-design framework for participative software systems in her project “Silence of the Lands”. This project aimed at connecting to the environment and connecting to each other. Elisa invited everyone to her inaugural lecture on the 24th of January, 2014.

dewis award 2014 DEWIS awards yearly the DEWIS award, the prize for the most promising female PhD student at TU Delft. This prize was created in 2007 to improve career prospects of young, talented women scientists by rewarding the quality of the PhDs dissertations and placing their extraordinary achievements in the spotlights. The independent, qualified jury, who decides the winner of the award, consisted this year of: prof. Karel Luyben (Rector Magnificus TU Delft and chair of the jury), prof. Marja Elsinga (OTB, member of DEWIS board) and prof. Catherine Pappas (Applied Sciences). This year’s awardees were: Laura Anitori (EEMCS), Elham Ashoori (CEG), Ilse Oosterlaken (TPM) and Femke van Wageningen-Kessels (CEG). Criteria to qualify for the DEWIS award: A Cum Laude PhD, (international and/or societal) meaning of the research and originality of the research question and approach. The jury was impressed with the awardees’ publications, their awards and the amount of citations so far. Besides a PhD degree with honours, the awardees had in common that they proved to belong to the top 5% of people finishing a PhD. After much deliberation, the jury decided unanimously to award the DEWIS award to Ilse Oosterlaken. The argumentation in support of this decision was that in her dissertation, Ilse made a very effective use of well-considered words. She also did her PhD project in 3,25 year and has many citations to her work. The jury praised Ilse for choosing the Capabilities Approach. And what is more, Ilse caught NWO funding in humanities with her ambitious dissertation approach. The Capabilities approach was developed by Amatya Sen and Martha Nussbaum on welfare economics. Since Sen got the Nobel prize in 1998, the capabilities approach fascinates many people and there is much written about it. “However: writing is one thing, making it actually work is another. Ilse substantially contributed to make it work and she will continue to work on it in the future” said Prof. Karel Luyben. The DEWIS award ceremony was set up differently to earlier editions. For the first time the awardees held a pitch about their dissertation projects. The pitches were recorded earlier, and showed at the DEWIS event. After the pitches, Karel Luyben spoke words of praise to the four awardees who were present in Delft, or were “live” through Skype or Google hangouts.

DEWIS symposium highlights technology and ethics

prof. Frances brazier new chair of Dewis

faculty consultations 2013/2014

DEWIS would like to introduce Prof. Frances Brazier to you as DEWIS’s new chair. Frances already has been active in the Board of DEWIS since March 2010. Frances was born in Toronto, but has lived in the Netherlands since she was a teenager. At the faculty of TPM Frances is the Systems Engineering section manager in the Multi-Actor Systems department and the title of her chair is Engineering Systems Foundations.

In May 2013, DEWIS started with its annual round of Faculty Meetings. In these rounds two members of the DEWIS board speak with the deans, HR staff and scientists about policies, efforts of the faculties to attract more women scientists and commitments that were expressed in the previous faculty consultation with DEWIS.

DEWIS is very happy that Frances accepted her new post as Chair of the network for women scientists. Frances has always been very involved in the (unbalanced) position of women and men in academia. “I believe that there is a lot of room for improvement with regard to the position of women within the academic world” said Frances in an article on TU Delft’s website. Frances is also a board member of the LNVH, the Dutch Network of Women Professors, until September 2013 she was president of the LNVH. The goal of this network is to promote equal representation of women within the academic community.

More about LNVH 0n page 8 of this newsletter

highlights 2013 for dewis and tu delft In the meeting of the sounding board, DEWIS’s chair Isabel Arends mentioned some important activities that TU Delft carried or continued to increase gender balance, or to build awareness for gender balance. DEWIS offered a range of activities in 2013 with the same aims, or to improve the skills of women scientists (personal development.) Here is a summary of the most important activities in 2013: The renewed website and logo of DEWIS A new launch of the Delft Technology Fellowship (open until 12 January 2014) • The DEWIS event “Design, Technology and Ethics” • The DEWIS award (winner is dr. Ilse Oosterlaken) • Personal development track for tenure trackers • Child care facilities on campus • Development of dual career facilities • Coaching managers know how to engage with diversity • Trainings and workshops by DEWIS • Faculty consultations by DEWIS • •

It is good to see that the gender balance awareness at TU Delft has increased over the past five years and that the faculties developed initiatives to make a cultural change. Faculty of Aerospace Engineering has for example positions for female scientists, some of these positions have been open for a long period. The faculty of Civil Engineering and Geosciences has an active career committee and gender boost programme. The faculty consultations will be finished early 2014. In the next newsletter of DEWIS there will be more about the consultations, such as best practices.

encountering obstacles in your career? go to website dewis to find more information on mentoring. workshop “your next career step?” DEWIS organized a workshop, entitled “Your Next Career Step” for post-docs and PhD candidates in their fourth year. This workshop had capacity for 20 scientists, DEWIS even had to disappoint a few scientists as the workshop was completely full. A trainer of the Valorisation Centre led the workshop. There were several exercises, one of the exercises was to evaluate the CVs of each other. (The participants were divided in groups then.) The trainers also brought other aspects to the attention of the group, such as: what are you looking for in your new job and which activities at work do you really enjoy and find motivating? Finally there was some time left for party pitching. DEWIS is currently working on its programme for 2014, and will examine the possibility to provide a CV workshop again once or twice. The feedback, given by the participants of this workshop and the previous one, will be used to further focus on the workshops which DEWIS wants to offer.


agenda january 2014


16 January 2014 | 12.00-14.00 | 14 HIVE Room TU Delft Library | Valorisation Centre TU Delft

27 January 2014 | 15.00-20.00 | 14 In de Driehoek, Utrecht | VHTO meeting Female Networks (STEM)

17 January 2014 | 13.00-15.00 | 14 Library TU Delft, Blue room | Workshop “Getting Things Done”

february 2014

24 January 2014 | 09.00-14.30 | Van der Grinten hall, faculty IDE | 14 Symposium “Connected Everyday”

27/28 February 2014 | day | De Baak, Noordwijk | Training Personal Leadership


24 January 2014 | 15.00-16.00 | Aula TU Delft | Inaugural speech 14 of Prof. Elisa Giaccardi (faculty IDE)

newslinks tu delft

DEWIS would appreciate it if you shared this information with your network.

open calls for applications

Dr. Hester Hellinga developed view-validating tool for architects

career Critical consumers often buy genetically modified food / patricia osseweijer Many brilliant minds from Delft included in VIVA400

opportunities for women in science and engineering

© DEWIS,2013

“work-life balance” central topic in meeting of sounding board dewis Tuesday 10 December DEWIS had a meeting with its sounding board members. There was no fixed agenda, so it was a good opportunity to bring important issues under the attention of DEWIS. The meeting started with an introduction round. It was also good to meet women who work at TU Delft at all faculties for many years, as well as women who started their careers in Delft not that long ago.


In this meeting Prof. Isabel Arends, officially resigned as chair of DEWIS. Isabel remembered that it was Catholijn Jonker who introduced her, being the only woman professor at the faculty of Applies Sciences, to the network. And DEWIS brought her much, so said Isabel. She told at the meeting of the Sounding Board that visibility is recognized if a scientist wants to pursue a career in science. Isabel thanked the other DEWIS board members and had a special thank you for Nynke Jansen, TU Delft’s HR director. Frances, the new chair of DEWIS, told that the Delft Technology Fellowship is exemplary to the other universities. She believes that this mark has much to do with the measures that Delft took so far to increase more gender balance. Frances also thanked Nynke for her persistence and enthusiasm for the gender issues. DEWIS wishes Isabel all the best in her job as head of department Biotechnology and wishes Nynke well with her sabbatical and her further career.

“no more excuses” Nynke talked about new initiatives when recruiting scientists. When there is a vacancy, the shortlist for the job must include at least three top women (worldwide.) The most often used excuse of a lack of suitable female candidates is absoute nonsense. Nynke also referred to the Delft Technology Fellowship and mentioned that is open for new proposals until half January 2014. She said that also women at TU Delft who are at the end of their post-doc and have experience outside TU Delft can apply. Nynke invited everyone to tell their network about this career opportunity. In the meeting there was a big discussion about work-life balance versus young mothers versus cultural aspects. This discussion lead to interesting new ideas, for example: bringing in gender awareness in training of master students (as sooner or later everyone is going to meet issues in the work-life balance), having a list with trusted babysitters (for international staff who do not have a network in the Netherlands yet.) Of course DEWIS can help women scientists, who are experiencing unbalanced work-life issues that hurdle their careers, by connecting them to a mentor. Another big discussion was about the language: Dutch would be beneficial for a career at TU Delft. Although English is the spoken language at departmental level, Dutch is more common at executive level. Finally there was some discussion about improper, undesirable behaviour. What to do, or how to react when your superior tells a stupid, but rather stereotypical — or even a sexist — joke? DEWIS advises if you do have cases of really improper behaviour, to address them to DEWIS, as the network has more volume to take action.

goldieblox, a girls’ construction toy to close the gender gap


A few weeks to go before children worldwide can enjoy themselves with their new toys they found in their Christmas stockings or — in the Netherlands — St Nicholas’s gunny sack. The kids are drooling for months over the glossy, colourful advertisements for toys in catalogues or in the media. These catalogues, although being weighty tomes, do not really contain anything new. The year-over-year pet-peeve about the gender stereotypes of toys came up, once again. Do little girls really need to be copycats of their mummies? They certainly deserve more than pink, princess garbs, (Barbie) dolls or little ponies, according to Debbie Sterling, the creator of GoldieBlox. In Marketing Facts, a Dutch online platform for viral marketing, recently appeared an article on the ad of GoldieBlox, a construction toy for girls. This ad — showing three girls creating a Rube Goldberg machine out of princess toys, with music set to a modified version of the Beastie Boys’ hit “Girls” — has become a hot topic of conversation on social media, generating discussion about a much broader issue: the dearth of women in the STEM fields. Early in a girl’s life, the toys marketed to her are usually things that do not encourage her to enter those fields. This is why Debbie Sterling, a Stanford engineer, created the GoldieBlox. Her concept was: create toys that get girls interested in engineering. The Beastie Boys sang, “Girls to do the dishes/Girls to clean up my room/Girls to do the laundry/Girls and in the bathroom/Girls, that’s all I really want is girls.” Instead, one of the actresses in the ad sings: “Girls build a spaceship/Girls code the new app/Girls that grow up knowing/That they can engineer that/Girls, that’s all we really need is girls/To bring us up to speed it’s girls/Our opportunity is girls/ Don’t underestimate girls.” Sterling said in an interview that she thought back to her own childhood with the princesses and wondered why construction toys and math & science kits are for boys. When elaborating the GoldieBlox, Sterling and five other engineers wanted “to create a cultural shift and close the gender gap.”

More about the GoldieBlox via these links: Debbie and GoldieBlox build a better future for girls everywhere

Will the Goldieblox ad make little girls dream of being engineers?

The brains behind the viral GoldieBlox video

GoldieBlox Ad Encourages Girls to Try Engineering

Why should children’s toys be segregated along gender lines?

Beastie Boys countersue GoldieBlox for toy video royalties

they are brainwashing our kids; gender stereotypes in toys Toying With Stereotypes (Science)

Het cadeauboek van Bart Smit: een aanwinst voor het seksismemuseum (De Volkskrant) © BART SMIT Het Grote Cadeauboek

3TU FEMALE ACADEMIC NETWORKS CONFERENCE 2013 engineering your career: independence and cooperation The 3TU female academic networks decided to organize a joint career conference, co-funded by LNVH and Aspasia. The conference, entitled “Engineering your career: independence and cooperation” was held the 18th November 2013. It had a plenary programme in Enschede that could be watched via realtime streaming; Delft and Eindhoven contributed by choosing excellent speakers as their representatives., organizing some activities on campus or simply by giving a helping hand with the organization of the event.


The event, offering a varied programme, addressed the ‘leaky pipeline’ syndrome by inviting academics to think proactively together about their career choices, setting independent research agendas, engaging in collaborative scientific endeavours and advising on the steps to be taken at different stages of the career by balancing cooperation and competition. The key questions were: • • •

How to combine competition and cooperation to make the best of your career? How to become an independent academic and establish your own research line and at the same time be cooperative? What are the mechanisms that influence the choice to pursue a career in science?

the it sector offers great career opportunities EU commissioner Kroes prepared and recorded a speech as she could not attend the event. Kroes referred to the “leaky pipeline” syndrome in her speech: women are under-represented in the IT sector, and even most of the technical skilled women go for a career elsewhere. She pled to fix this problem as it would lead to huge benefits for women, their employers and the economy. The IT is not for geeks, programming in dark, muggy and lonely backrooms, she said. “It is time to shatter this stereotype, that is unattractive and untrue.” Kroes finished her speech with a request for using the many role models to inspire the female tech talents. women have less resources and networks, compared to men Professor Elizabeth Berg (Luleå University of Technology, Sweden) wondered in her lecture whether if it would be better for a scientist to be known outside rather than inside your university, if both options are not possible. Elizabeth referred to her own career, she applied for a position as PhD candidate after she became fascinated by research and the things a researcher does. She talked about background, aims, organizational context and gender research. Berg also showed gender statistics in academia, in Sweden and in Europe.

Collaboration in research environments, types and leadership Professor Carlijn Bouten (TU Eindhoven) clarified in her speech that she did not engineer her own career and that she competed with herself. She continued explaining about role models and the performance of women in a time where science and technology are changing. Nowadays, it is about collaborating. Carlijn spoke about reasons why to start/end collaborate, the different types and zoomed in gender roles and leadership styles. She advised to follow courses or to join a network. they are brainwashing our kids! Professor Sabine Roeser (TU Delft) held a philosophical speech about gender and risky stereotypes in science and engineering. Sabine shared recent ideas about implicit bias, institutional factors, women’s self-image she found in state-of-the-art literature on gender. But the lack of women in science also has to do with gender stereotyping at an early age. ”They are brainwashing our kids” stated Sabine and she shared some examples she experienced with her own children. She concluded her lecture by explaining why our society needs emotional engineers. diversity, is that still an issue? Prof. Suzanne Hulscher (University of Twente) focused in her speech to the representation of women at the top positions, to the measures of the university to increase the percentages and which measures were effective. Examples of effective measures are: transparency in promotion criteria and procedures, the UT Aspasia Fund and UTWIST3, the University Twente-Women in Science & Technology Tenure Track. Mobility and the responsibility shifts for career management from superior to the women themselves, considers Suzanne as beautiful results.


afternoon programme (enschede) After lunch the participants had the opportunity to join one of the three workshops, followed by a panel discussion about how to engineer your career, moderated by Prof. Sawitri Saharso and Prof. Liudvika Leisyte. After the panel discussion a list with ten recommendations for a career in science was drawn. A reception closed the event.

the Dutch Network of Women Professors

more information? You can find the inspirational presentations and their abstracts, photos and the video presentation of EU commissioner Kroes on the website of the Female Faculty Network Twente.

The goal of LNVH, the Dutch Network of Women Professors, is to promote equal representation of women within the academic community. The foundation aims to achieve this through:

• •

3tu conference “engineering your career: independence and cooperation 1. Make sure you know your own professional ambitions, be clear about your goals and make them known to your colleagues and superiors. 2. Play ‘the game’ but remain yourself. Adapt to the ‘rules of the game’ to some extent, show to your superiors that you are taking them seriously. 3. At the same time, be selective about which rules of the game you follow. Don’t compromise your own values, you don’t need to ‘become a man’ to reach your goals. Be true to yourself and believe in what you are doing. 4. Opt for reviewing, especially book reviewing. Most of reviewers are men, so it is time to be more proactive as reviews do count as publications in your CV. 5. Network as much as you can and get connections to write together and apply for funding together. 6. Publish as much as you can- even if is not a high impact factor journal. You need to start somewhere. Create space for writing. 7. Make the obstacles you face explicit, talk to people, seek help. 8. Learn from your peers who are one step ahead of you. 9. Women tend not to see how good they are. Be proactive in asking for recognition and acknowledgment. It is important to get acknowledgment from your colleagues and mentors. It will give you self-esteem and contribute to your career. 10. Do not wait until the official promotion talk to say what your expectations are regarding the next career step. Address these issues with your superior informally whenever you have a chance.

• •

strengthening the links between women professors and associate professors in the Netherlands, inter-, as well as intradisciplinary and to give support in all activities surrounding professorships and associate professorships; promoting the rise of capable women to higher university positions, and to prevent their efflux; cooperation with organisations with comparable goals, in the field of academic research and education; striving for numerically proportionate representation of women in committees and advisory boards in the field of academic research and education; every other factor that contributes to achieving its goals, provided these are not contrary to Dutch Law or public order.

lnvh recently visited tu delft

LNVH recently visited TU Delft to speak about gender balance issues with the Executive Board, HR Director, a delegation of HR Talent and DEWIS. The meeting was primarily meant as mutual exploration of new initiatives of LNVH, and to see if TU Delft can be hooked up for certain themes. According to LNVH, TU Delft does very well when it comes to the representation of women in management (Executive Board, deans and directors), however the percentages of women professors and associate professors are low. Other subjects that came on the table were: the assembly of career committees and the number of female chairs of the committees, to counteract the closed selection procedures of professorial appointments and the doubts of universities being connected to the Charter Talent to the Top.

associate professors: lnvh is there for you too Did you know that LNVH is not only for women professors? Associate professors

are also welcome to join this network. LNVH focuses to connect a new generation of women scientists to its network. LNVH also actively involves women post-docs in its activities. Do you want to know more about LNVH, its aims and its activities? Just check their website!

Sorry, but being a mother is not the most important job in the world

Waar blijven de wiskundemeisjes?

Work, Women and Caregiving

Sexual harassment is constant in clubs and it must stop, students say

Satisficing, how women can happily step away from the perfection myth

Ik ben wetenschapper, geen vrouw in de wetenschap

Lean in at work, but go retro at home

How not to run a women in science campaign

Why men (still) don’t do dishes

Science without borders


Why there are so few women in Sillicon Valley

Does Gender Play Role in Negative Word of Mouth Advertising?

How faculty mentors can help in the job search

The best comebacks to sexist comments

The Risks and Rewards of Academia

Corporate Culture of Respect Prevents Workplace Sexual Harassment

Gender Barriers to Blame for Shortage of Women in STEM Careers

I’d rather have women only awards than quotas

Women engineers boosted by postgraduate grants plan

Female apprentices train for low-paid jobs, TUC report says

Are Women Just ‘Choosing’ Not to Pursue Science Careers?

Men Support Cracking Glass Ceiling

Why do female scientists receive less funding?

100 Women: Why tech needs a makeover to attract girls Young women will find engineering inspiring, not intimidating

Filling the Information Gap About Post-Ph.D. Careers

Horizon 2020: What’s in it for Young Scientists?

DEWIS wishes you a merry Christmas and a happy 2014!

colofon DEWIS is TU Delft’s network for women scientists. This newsletter has been attentively compiled by DEWIS. Please send an e-mail (subject “unsubscribe” ) if you do not want to receive the newsletter in future. DEWIS is interested in your questions, remarks and suggestions for (activities of) DEWIS.

Contact Editor: S.J.M.C. Koreman Lay-out & Artwork: S.J.M.C. Koreman (015) 278 8458 dewis @

DEWIS newsletter 2013/03  

Read about: DEWIS; Activities of DEWIS (& others); Agenda; Career opportunities for women in science and engineering; work-life balance; gen...

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