“Pushing for better gender balance, diversity and inclusion in science is about fighting discrimination and removing obstacles. It is also, hopefully, about making science better.”
Christine Aicardi is Senior Research Fellow in Prof. Nikolas Rose's Foresight Laboratory, in the Department of Global Health and Social Medicine at King’s College London, contributing social scientific research to the Ethics and Society programme of the Human Brain Project. Christine worked for many years in the Information and Communication Technologies industry before returning to higher education to pursue a MSc then a PhD in Science and Technology Studies at University College London. Before joining the Human Brain Project, she was a Wellcome Library Research Fellow, working on a sociological history project focused on the neuroscientific part of the late Francis Crick’s career. Her long-standing research interests are the contemporary history of the sciences and technologies of brain and mind; the social studies of interdisciplinary practices and collaborations; and increasingly, the politics of memory in science.
“To my mind diversity and the inclusion of many different perspectives is fundamentally important, especially in a project like the HBP. We have to improve in its Gender Balance, just as we need to have a good balance of young people and older people, people from different cultures and disciplines. As Scientific Research Director I am glad that we are actively working on this issue.”
In 2016 Katrin Amunts became Chair of the HBP Science and Infrastructure Board (SIB) and Scientific Research Director. In addition, she is leading Subproject 2 Human Brain Organization.
Katrin Amunts graduated in 1987 in medicine and biophysics. She did her PhD in medicine and her postdoctoral work in the Cécile and Otto Vogt Institute for Brain Research at Düsseldorf University, Germany. In 1999, she set up a new research unit for Brain Mapping in the Research Centre Jülich. In 2004, she became a Professor for Structural-Functional Brain Mapping, and in 2008 full Professor at the Department of Psychiatry, Psychotherapy and Psychosomatics at RWTH Aachen University. Since 2013, she is Professor for Brain Research and director of the C. and O. Vogt Institute for Brain Research, Heinrich-Heine University Düsseldorf and director of the Institute of Neuroscience and Medicine (INM-1), Research Centre Jülich. Her research interest is to develop a three-dimensional atlas of the human brain that integrates the different levels of brain organisation across the scales as tool to better understand human brain organisation.
Katrin Amunts is member and Vice-Chair of the German Ethics Council. She is member of the German National Academy of Science and Engineering (acatech) and the North Rhine-Westphalian Academy of Sciences, Humanities and the Arts. She also serves on the editorial board of Brain Structure and Function, is the speaker of the German Helmholtz Association programme Decoding the Human Brain. Since 2017 she is Co-Speaker of the newly established Max Planck School of Cognition.
Francesco Saverio Pavone is directing a research group working in the field of biophotonics on single molecule biophysics, microscopy imaging-spectroscopy techniques, biomedical imaging, laser manipulation of bio-samples. In particular, he is developing new microscopy techniques for high resolution and high sensitivity imaging, and for laser manipulation purposes. These techniques have been applied both for single molecule biophysics, single cell imaging and optical manipulation. Tissue imaging is another research area developed, where non-linear optical techniques have been applied for skin and neural tissue imaging also in-vivo. Pavone is authors of many internationals papers and editor of international books. He has more than 100 invited talk and he is editors of international journals. He coordinates several European projects and he has organized several international congresses; he is also director of the European Laboratory for Non Linear Spectroscopy in Florence, winner of a European Research Council Advanced Grant.
“Working with such bright, outstanding people in the Human Brain Project is a great pleasure. I am excited to share good practice examples in the field of gender equality across borders and disciplines.”
Helga Lukoschat is the Chair Person and founder of EAF Berlin, the non-profit in charge of the Gender task. Helga Lukoschat has developed and implemented numerous mentoring and career programs for young female talent. She has led various research and consulting projects on diversity in science, large corporations and politics.
“The Human Brain Project should be a flagship in the field of Gender Equality! Gender Equality is clearly a focus of the EU’s Horizon 2020 strategy. Thus, I am really honored to be part of the HBP's Gender task. As an international team, we really try to push standards to increase gender equality in science.”
Katharina Schiederig’s focus is on consulting and training for the promotion of young talent and diversity management in science. She conducts the HBP’s Gender task for EAF Berlin, together with Dr. Helga Lukoschat. Katharina Schiederig regularly conducts trainings for career planning and gender & diversity issues for doctoral students, postdocs, professors and management level at various research institutions.