February 14, 2021 – 8:40 PM – The World
Asma Boujatat has been elected a science ambassador by the WATS (Women in Technology and Science Award) campaign. This award was created by Innoviris, the Institute for the Promotion of Scientific Research and Innovation in the Brussels-Capital Region, to improve the representation of women in scientific fields. The campaign spotlights women who are active in the world of technology and science.
Candidates have made videos about their experiences and careers. After a vote and a participatory evaluation by a jury made up of young girls, laboratory technologist Asma Bugatat won the prize. “I am very proud and honorable. I participated in this competition to show a different point of view to scientists. We often think of a highly educated man with white hair and glasses behind a microscope,” Grenades tells me.
After her studies at Ferrer University of Applied Sciences, Asma Bugatat began working as a technological laboratory at the Institut Pasteur. Since 2009, she has worked at the Duve Institute at UCL, in the laboratory for basic research in microbiology. Thanks to the WATS award, Asma Bugatat will participate in 2021 campaigns and initiatives to further inspire young girls to choose technology and science. It will also receive € 10,000 for activities promoting scientific careers for women.
The WATS Prize was introduced on February 11th. This is the day UNESCO declared the International Day of Women and Girls in Science. The underrepresentation of women in science and technology is much stronger in Belgium than in the rest of Europe. “These however are accessible professions. We need to break the aura of inaccessibility that surrounds scientific professions. My 6-year-old daughter went to the lab one day. She told me she liked my job. I really want young people here. Media,” Asmaa says .
According to UNESCO, women are underrepresented in the research sector around the world and remain a large minority in the scientific professions, according to UNESCO. “Even today, in the twenty-first century, women and girls are not encouraged to pursue science because of their gender,” said Audrey Azoulay, Director-General of the United Nations agency responsible for education, science and culture.