Staff news

Chemist sets up women in STEM network

A leading scientist at Edinburgh has set up a network for women in Scotland working in science, technology, engineering and maths.

Image of Professor Polly Arnold

Professor Polly Arnold, of the University’s School of Chemistry, established Sci-Sisters to bring together women working in leadership positions in STEM subjects across academia, government and industry.

The network aims to combat isolation and create a network which, while offering support, also highlights the fantastic work of Scotland’s women working in STEM.

It also aims to make the work of Scotland’s female STEM experts more visible to the outside world by providing a cross-cutting database of excellent scientists.

Join the network

Those interested in joining the network can visit the Sci-Sisters website launched today, and explore the map to find the name, job title and keywords of a nearby ‘sister’ and expert.

The Sci-Sister network encourages women who are STEM leaders in industry, government and academia to apply.

Chemistry expert

Professor Polly Arnold holds the Crum Brown Chair of Chemistry at the University, where her research is focused on exploratory synthetic chemistry.

Polly obtained degrees from Oxford and Sussex, and was a Fulbright postdoctoral fellow at MIT before returning to the UK to a lectureship in 1999.

She has received a variety of awards and prizes, including the Seaborg Lectureship 2015 and the Corday Morgan 2012 prize from the Royal Society of Chemistry.

Supported by the Royal Society's 2012 Rosalind Franklin award, Polly made 'A Chemical Imbalance', a film and book that celebrates women in science, and explores the issues that contribute to their continuing under-representation.

Women who do make it to senior positions in Scotland’s science-based professions can find themselves in a position where they are a lone woman in an area, and perhaps leading an all-male team, even with the best attempts of their institution to increase the diversity of its work force. Through this new Sci-Sisters network I hope we can support each other in building a network that underpins deserved confidence among senior women and highlights excellence.

Professor Polly ArnoldCrum Brown Chair of Chemistry

Related links


A Chemical Imbalance

Professor Polly Arnold