“Women work in science, technology, mathematics. People need to see us in these roles”
In 2015, 11 February was declared by the UN as “International Day of Women and Girls in Science.” BGSMath supports this initiative and shares its ideals of equality in science. BGSMath and the Societat Catalana de Matemàtiques jointly decided to organise a special event at the Institut d’Estudis Catalans in Barcelona to visualise successful female mathematicians and their research that has an impact on our everyday’s lives.
“The Barcelona Graduate School of Mathematics and the Catalan Society for Mathematics have decided to celebrate the “International day of girls and women in science” with a public event to showcase the many women mathematicians, who work in top-level fields of research with important applications in society. Besides teaching, they do fun stuff we want people to see,” says Natàlia Castellana, professor at UAB, member of BGSMath and of the Catalan Society for Mathematics (SCM).
BGSMath Faculty member Jésica de Armas reminds that “Mathematics provides models that allow us to obtain optimal solutions, like creating minimal distance or minimal cost routes for an online store. Behind the solution of daily problems lies mathematics. If it weren’t there, the solutions we would obtain would be of lesser quality.”
Ana Freire, professor at UPF, shared her experience as a woman working in technology, “mostly a masculine sector,” she notes. “I never experienced discrimination, but I still have some anecdotes to tell. Sometimes in conferences, people came and asked me who was the programmer, even if that was me. This is why it is so important to present women working in science, technology, mathematics, so that it becomes familiar for people to see us in these roles.”
Finally, UB PhD student Giulia Binotto and BGSMath member has a message for all: “The advice I’d give to my 12 y.o. self is: don’t be afraid of anything, all will go fine. I think it’s a good advice for a 12 y.o. girl and for a 30 y.o. woman,” she says.