The inaugural Award for Inspiring Science was presented to Mirjana Povic, an astrophysicist assistant professor at the Ethiopian Space Science and Technology Institute, Ethiopia, and associated researcher at the Spanish IAA-CSIC. The inaugural Award for Innovating Science was presented to the Association of Hungarian Women in Science (NaTE), a non-profit, non-governmental organization that aims to promote STEM and computer sciences among girls who are underrepresented in these fields of education.
The two honorees will receive access to a network of leaders and scientists from The Estée Lauder Companies and Nature Research, as part of our ongoing commitment to women's mentorship. We are proud that both Lisa Napolione, SVP-global R&D, and Dr. Nadine Pernodet, leader of ELC's skin biology and bioactives group, served on the judging panels for the awards. They will continue to proudly represent the company as mentors, sharing their experiences in applied research, advanced technologies and product design and wide breadth of knowledge garnered through the publication of over 50 articles and peer-reviewed scientific publications.
Povic has taught science to orphans in Rwanda, helped to organize a supportive community for women with HIV in Tanzania and contributed to space research in various countries across Africa. She has excelled in her own research at the Ethiopian Space Science and Technology Institute in Addis Ababa and the Institute of Astrophysics of Andalusia in Granada, Spain. In her acceptance speech, Povic said, "I want to continue dedicating my life to using astronomy and space science for developing education in African countries. In particular, I would like to engage even more in promoting the STEM subjects to young girls and strengthening the links between women in science." She plans to use her award prize to collaborate with the Society of Ethiopian Women in Science and Technology in creating outreach talks about STEM to young women in Ethiopia, particularly in rural and remote areas of the country.
The Association of Hungarian Women in Science was established in 2008 by ten active female researchers. Since then, NaTE has grown into a country-wide network of scientists, both men and women, working in STEM or social sciences, who are committed to gender balance in academia, technology, innovation and research and development. The organization has founded projects such as the 'Excellence Award for Women in Science', 'Scindicator - A science communication competition', 'Smart future for Girls' and 'Girls' Day'. Katalin Balazsi, president of NaTE, accepted the award on behalf of the organization and remarked on the honor it was for the organization to receive the award. She noted that it was the first international award the organization had ever received and hoped that the distinction would allow the association to expand into Hungary's neighboring countries, thus increasing the networking opportunities for women in science.
To learn more about the awards ceremony and our partnership with Nature Research, click here