#BalanceforBetter: We couldn’t agree more

STEM: Who says it’s not for girls? 

This year, the theme for International Women’s Day is “Balance for Better”, which is about building a more gender balanced world. Some may question whether, as we sit here in 2019, events aimed at female empowerment are necessary, or whether we have passed the point in time where such events have relevance – particularly in most of Europe where diversity may be more developed. When we look at science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM), it is clear that while we have made meaningful progress, there is certainly more work to be done to support women and girls globally. Latest data show that less than a third of the world’s researchers are female, and the issue is confounded by the fact that we still see a lower rate of participation from women in STEM higher education subjects.

Here at EIT Health, we are a young organisation – we are now in our fourth year. From the very beginning, our organisation has been led by a team of strong women and men from many different backgrounds and cultures, and so you could say that diversity has been woven into the very fabric of EIT Health. Since we have not had to break down historical barriers or habits that may slow an organisation’s ability to achieve diversity, I could not even imagine how EIT Health would look without it – certainly, I think it would stunt the innovation that we see flourishing every day throughout our network. This is why we feel it is important to support and promote opportunities for women to bring their talents to the health innovation sector, and we are proud that WE Health, our programme aiming to enhance the participation of women in health innovation and entrepreneurship, is now in its second year. We offer many opportunities to women as part of this programme including networking, training and mentorship. In fact, you can register right now for our free-of-charge module ‘Empowering women in health innovation: unlocking your innovative potential’, taking place in April 2019.

I am proud to be part of an organisation that has welcomed and encouraged ambitious and talented people from all walks of life to work towards a shared goal of improving lives in Europe. And now, in celebration of International Women’s Day, I would like to highlight some of the female leaders within the EIT Health community who have inspired me (it was very difficult to choose only four, there are so many).




PUBLISHED: 8 March 2019