Securing research funding to discover new knowledge is a very important aspect of the career of most researchers. Currently 22% of SFI’s grants are held by women, a percentage comparable with funders worldwide. SFI has made it a priority to increase this number by supporting women at every stage of their career in STEM. Examples of such polices include:

  • The Smart Futures programme provides STEM career information to second-level students and strives to portray STEM careers as an attractive option for male and female students alike, by providing positive role models for women in STEM.
  • SFI provides a maternity allowance for our researchers
  • SFI have incentivised Irish Higher Education Institutes to submit more applications from women to our flag ship early career programme, the Starting Investigator Grant  
  • SFI ask the international experts who evaluate applications to consider career breaks and periods of part-time work when assessing an applicants’ productivity over a timeframe
  • SFI have an organisation wide target of securing a minimum 30% female reviewers as part of any evaluation panel
  • SFI are constantly benchmarking ourselves against international best practice and are always searching for new and innovative ways to further retain and support women in research

More information on what Science Foundation Ireland has put in place to support women in science in Ireland is available through the “Science Foundation Ireland Women in Science” webpage.