Dr Christina Riesselman, a geologist from The University of Otago, was honoured in a ceremony in Auckland recently when she became the first L’Oréal-UNESCO For Women in Science New Zealand Fellow. She will receive a $25,000 fellowship to assist her in her research into climate change.
While L’Oréal For Women in Science has been open to New Zealand women scientists since 2012, this is the first year L’Oréal New Zealand has a dedicated Fellow, so it is cause for celebration.
L’Oréal, as a research-based company, has always had a love of science. But seeing how under-represented women were generally in science, 17 years ago the company, along with UNESCO, launched the L’Oréal-UNESCO For Women in Science initiative. The idea? To support and recognise women researchers, to encourage more young women to enter the profession and to assist them once their careers are in progress.
Every year since, L’Oréal has been dedicated to keeping the debate about women in the spotlight. And it’s a subject that still is not going away – Nobel Prize winner Sir Tim Hunt lost his job this year over comments he made about women in laboratories, and this week Nicole Kidman returned to London’s West End to play side-lined DNA scientist Rosalind Franklin. So the need to continue goes on.
Here is a link to a film about Dr Riesselman and her work: https://youtu.be/_2SJci9G0P4?list=PLEEUNTEZ07iqSpAQyF4MBWEHUjtBY7rAE