23 March 2016
High-profile English academic and champion of women in science, Dame Carol Robinson visited the Malaghan Institute in late March. As the first female professor of chemistry at both the University of Oxford and the University of Cambridge, where she is at present, Dame Carol has a unique perspective about womens role in science. Exactly one year ago she was named the LOréal-Unesco For Women In Science, European Laureate for 2015.
She says several things have stood out for her during her visit, Firstly, the talent of a number of women scientists has impressed me greatly. I really hope they continue to reinforce this exciting and rewarding career pathway, for future generations of women scientists. Women can tend to give up and not recognise their talent, but with time I hope we see things change and the default position is that talent rise irrespective of gender. Additionally, I had been unaware of the potential for cancer immunotherapies therapeutic vaccines to help the body to fight against cancer and the advanced nature of the research being carried out here in New Zealand. There would be few amongst us whose lives have not been touched by cancer directly, or through friends and family members experiences.
While there is not yet an official collaboration between her research group at Oxford University and the Malaghan Institute early conversations are promising.