A Life for Science


Since 1901, when the Swedish Academy set up Nobel prizes for achievements in various scientific disciplines, only 11 women, compared with 435 men, have received one of the awards. But with the help of programmes to support women's involvement in scientific research sponsored by UNESCO and the European Commission, the careers and commitment of several female pioneers have proved that science is no longer an all-male domain. Margarita Salas has faith that "in the not too distant future women will achieve a rate of participation in the professional world and in society high enough for them to believe that they matter at all levels and in every situation. And not because there are quotas: I'm totally against quotas for women. It's up to us to conquer the space that we deserve." She has done just that by devoting herself entirely to her profession: "I like other things too, like music or art... I go to concerts and exhibitions, but research is the purpose of my life," she says. …

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