LIZZIE DALY Bi­ol­o­gist and wildlife pre­sen­ter


Science, tech­nol­ogy, engineerin­g, maths and medicine (or STEMM for short) are still pre­dom­i­nantly male ori­en­tated ca­reer paths, with women only rep­re­sent­ing 30% of the world­wide re­search and devel­op­ment work­force. This month, on Fe­bru­ary 11, the UN cel­e­brates its an­nual In­ter­na­tional Women and Girls in Science Day to help in­spire young women to take up STEMM sub­jects. We spoke to bi­ol­o­gist and wildlife pre­sen­ter Lizzie Daly and asked what the past, present and fu­ture of women in STEMM looks like to her. Past: I loved bi­ol­ogy and physics, but I felt that I learnt a lot about STEMM out of school too. I was very lucky to be en­cour­aged to con­duct my own sci­en­tific re­search.

Present: I have fin­ished my masters, and I am now pur­su­ing a PhD on hu­man-ele­phant con­flict in Kenya and have just re­turned from three months in the field. As a wildlife pre­sen­ter ev­ery day is dif­fer­ent. Some­times I’m talk­ing about the mil­lions of spec­i­mens in the Nat­u­ral His­tory Mu­seum, while oth­ers are spent knee deep in the river Shan­non hold­ing a lam­prey!

Fu­ture: I think we need to cel­e­brate more fe­male role mod­els in STEMM, and also I think there needs to be a change in its per­cep­tion. Girls still see STEMM as bor­ing, but there is so much in­no­va­tion in­volved.

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