WISER Program's First 11 Awardees To Promote Women's Participation In International R&D

By: WE Staff | Wednesday, 19 October 2022

The Vice Chancellor of the Jawaharlal Nehru University and the German Ambassador to India and Bhutan honoured the first 11 awardees of the Women Involvement in Science and Engineering Research (WISER) initiative.

The ten women researchers from India and the one from Germany who were chosen for the WISER-2022 programme and who hold regular/long-term research positions in academia, research organisations, or industry will be given financial aid to take part in and collaborate on ongoing R&D & industry projects. They won't have to submit new grant applications for projects in the cooperating nations.

H.E. Dr. Philipp Ackermann, the German ambassador to India and Bhutan, praised the women researchers' work in specialised fields of science and technology and declared that their contribution will improve S&T collaborations between India and Germany.

“Initiation of a programme like WISER would motivate women researchers to excel and take up leadership positions in Science & Technology,” said Vice Chancellor of Jawarharlal Nehru University Prof. Santishree Dhulipudi Pandit.

Shri S.K. Varshney, advisor, head of DST's international cooperation division and co-chair of the IGSTC Governing Body, predicted that it will increase scientific and technological excellence and promote gender parity.

The programme, which permits academics to work on overseas projects while remaining in India, is available to all STEM fields and has a three-year tenure span or until the project is completed. It will cover a single annual visit for a brief stay of up to one month.

For a variety of reasons, women researchers are still underrepresented in the fields of STEM (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics).

Although things have somewhat improved over the past few years, there is still an imbalance. To address this imbalance, the Department of Science and Technology (DST), Government of India, and the Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF), Government of Germany, established the International Growth and Science and Technology Centre (IGSTC). By utilising complementary expertise in science, technology, innovation, and research partnerships, IGSTC Women Involvement in Science and Engineering Research (WISER) aims to increase scientific capacity, retain, and advance women researchers in Germany and India.