Vancouver Forum of the Week: Women in Science, Health, and Innovation

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      The world needs more geek girls. Despite advances in many professions, women are underrepresented in the sciences.

      In Canada, women accounted for only 33 percent of university graduates in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics in the 2011 National Household Survey.

      To address the issue of gender balance, women scientists from North America and Europe are speaking at a Vancouver conference this week. Dubbed “Women in Science, Health and Innovation: Leadership Looking to the Future”, the event is a collaboration among the Consulates-General of France, Germany, the Netherlands, Swit­zerland, the U.K., and the U.S., and Neuroethics Canada at UBC.

      The featured speakers are Corinne Alberti of the Robert Debré Pediatric Teaching Hospital in Paris; Robin Bennett, University of Washington Medical Center; Ineke Klinge, Maastricht University; Mona Nemer, chief science adviser, Government of Canada; Simone Schürle-Finke, Swiss Federal Institute of Technology in Zurich; Lesley Shannon, SFU; Ilina Singh, University of Oxford; and Christiane Woopen, University of Cologne.

      B.C. Lt.-Gov. Janet Austin will deliver the opening remarks. A panel discussion will follow the talks, and it will be moderated by UBC president Santa Ono and Judy Illes of Neuroethics Canada.

      The conference will be held on Thursday (March 7) at the Morris J. Wosk Centre for Dialogue (580 West Hastings Street), starting at 6:30 p.m.