Dr Tereza Neocleous awarded scientific heirloom

Tuesday 9th October, 2018

Leading female mathematicians and computer scientists awarded scientific heirlooms by their peers at the second Suffrage Science Awards for Mathematics and Computing on 8 October 2018.

A hundred years after the first women in Britain got the vote, women still only make up 23% of those working in core science, technology, engineering and mathematics occupations in the UK.

Solving the pipeline issue is a long-term challenge for maths and computing with female students making up only 15% of undergraduate computer science students and 37% of mathematical sciences students in 2016/17, compared to 61% of Biological Sciences students.

On 8 October 2018, 11 scientists from across the UK will be presented with hand-crafted jewellery at the Suffrage Science awards ceremony held at the British Library, London. The awards celebrate women in science and encourage others to enter science and reach senior leadership roles.

The 11 awardees are chosen by the previous award holders for their scientific achievements and ability to inspire others. The awards themselves are items of jewellery, inspired by the Suffrage movement, and are passed on as heirlooms from one female scientist to the next.

The School's own Dr Tereza Neocleous was nominated by Professor Jane Hutton, University of Warwick.

Jane’s reasons for her nomination were as follows:

“She has made important contributions to forensic statistics, as well as other areas of application. Tereza has applied her research interests, in a range regression models to an impressive variety of disciplines. In particular, she has contributed to forensic statistics (statistics in the law) through her work in both hard sciences e.g. chemometrics, and social science, e.g. -linguistics. She presents her work with engaging style which encourages others to explore new fields.”

Congratulations Tereza!

Alongside the awards former BBC journalist Susan Watts will lead a discussion about the most striking positive developments and ongoing challenges faced by women in maths and computing. On the eve of Ada Lovelace day new recipient, Professor Ursula Martin, University of Oxford will discuss her new book ‘Ada Lovelace: The making of a Computer Scientist’. Alongside inaugural awardee Professor Carron Shankland, University of Stirling who will share her experience of gender diversity in computing and the value of networks. While Professor Dame Celia Hoyles, University College London will share her insights on the current landscape of mathematics education and explore areas where more action is needed.

The Suffrage Science scheme was initiated by Professor Dame Amanda Fisher, Director of the MRC London Institute of Medical Sciences (MRC LMS) in 2011.

Amanda says “The creation of the Maths and Computing Suffrage Sciences Awards in 2016 recognised the increasing importance of mathematics and computing to the life sciences. As in all branches of the awards their purpose is to celebrate female scientists, their scientific achievements and ability to inspire others. This is especially important in maths and computing where female students studying these subjects are still in the minority. We are delighted to welcome this year’s awardees into the growing Suffrage Science community and look forward to supporting them to inspire the next generation.”

The 2018 award winners are:
Dr Ruth Keogh London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine
Dr Tereza Neocleous University of Glasgow
Dr Nina Snaith University of Bristol
Dr Daniela De Angelis MRC BSU/Cambridge
Dr Eugenie Hunsicker Loughborough University
Professor Sally Fincher University of Kent
Professor Julie McCann Imperial College London
Professor Jane Hillston University of Edinburgh
Professor Ursula Martin University of Oxford
Dr Hannah Dee University of Aberystwyth
Dr Vicky Neale University of Oxford

Each previous holder chooses whom they want to pass their heirloom onto, below are reasons for two of the nominations.

“This award is about forming networks of inspiring women to support others – a description that fits Eugenie perfectly – she has constantly supported me and so many others.” Professor Gwyneth Stallard, Open University on her nomination of Dr Eugenie Hunsicker, Loughborough University.

“Ursula has done more for women in science and particularly maths and computer science than anyone I know, I can’t think of a better person to hand over my Suffrage Science award to.” Professor Dame Wendy Hall, University of Southampton on her nomination of Professor Ursula Martin, University of Oxford.

The current award holders (2016) were:
Professor Christl Donnelly Imperial College London
Professor Jane Hutton University of Warwick
Professor Frances Kirwan University of Oxford
Professor Sylvia Richardson MRC BSU/Cambridge
Professor Gwyneth Stallard Open University
Professor Ann Blandford University College London
Professor Muffy Calder University of Glasgow
Professor Leslie Goldberg University of Oxford
Professor Wendy Hall University of Southampton
Professor Carron Shankland University of Stirling
Professor Celia Hoyles University College London

The jewellery was created by art students from Central St Martins who worked with scientists to design pieces inspired by research and the Suffragette movement, from which the award scheme takes its name.