On October 29, 2021, a clear and sunny autumn day, the Women-in-Science Network Medicine (WiSNetMed) was officially inaugurated at the Medical Faculty. The initiators from local DFG collaborative research projects welcomed more than 110 internal and external participants from clinics and research institutes.
Dean Professor Frank Ulrich Müller stressed the significance of this initiative in his welcome address, emphasizing that it deserved respect, recognition and, most importantly, support. Women scientists benefit greatly from organizations like WiSNetMed, because equal opportunity in management roles in many medical fields has yet to be established. The presence of male colleagues shows that equal opportunity is a shared goal that must be addressed collaboratively.
Professor Petra Scheutzel, Vice-Dean for Dentistry and Equal Opportunities, elaborated on the Medical Faculty's stated goal of increasing the proportion of women in top positions. At the beginning of 2021, the CRU 326's advanced training program "Leadership Journey" was added to the support measures for women at the faculty, which was briefly explained by Dr. Maria Schubert, the previous Equal Opportunities Representative of CRU 326.
In a very personal lecture, the DFG guest speaker Dr. Andreas Görlich, first dealt with the special challenges for mothers and fathers in the field of research and gave an insight into the motivation for his own career decisions. Dr. Görlich then went on to describe how the German Research Foundation's (DFG) funding measures are based on the ideals of equality for scientists. He emphasized that the guidelines of the DFG were once again tightened to the effect that greater attention should be paid to "increasing the proportion of women in the postdoc phase" and "how universities deal with diversity" in the years 2020-2022. The aim of the DFG’s equal opportunities work is to foster a balanced relationship between women and men in the science system as well as the compatibility of family and academic careers, which should, in turn, promote increased quality in science. For this purpose, among other things, living conditions will be taken into account from 2022 when assessing academic achievements in research applications.
Finally, the spokesperson for WiSNetMed Dr. Sabine Blass-Kampmann presented the planned activities of the network and encouraged all those present to visit the marketplace set up in the garden of the dean's office and inform themselves about the activities of Faculty, UKM and WWU funding institutions. She encouraged all participants to "make new contacts today and - most importantly - stick with them. You are the network!"
Following the talks, the participants interacted with the participating partner groups of the network and were able to attend a trial training session on “Leadership Journey”. Announcements regards offers from the participating research associations and the upcoming network events will be announced on this homepage. Anyone who would like to receive E-Mails and the network's newsletter can subscribe to the mailing list.