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Women in Science

Women in Science Events

Details of events that are being held both as part of the Faculty of Natural & Mathematical Sciences' Women in Science Initiative.

Women in Science Week 2017

Women in Science week 2017 will run from Wednesday 4 October to Wednesday 11 October 2017. A number of events will be taking place. Dates are listed below, and more details will follow:

Wednesday 4 October - Women in Science Scholarships and Prize Winners Lunch

Monday 9 October, 6pm - 8.30pm - NMS @ the Movies

Wednesday 11 October, 2pm - 4pm - Ada Lovelace Day


Past Events

International Women's Day:Women in Maths Day

Women of Mathematics Exhibition 


Entering the field of mathematics can be tough, and women often encounter specific obstacles. This exhibition offers a glimpse into the world of mathematics through photographs (by Noel Tovia Matoff) and excerpts of interviews (by Sylvie Paycha and Sara Azzali) of thirteen women mathematicians throughout Europe.

This touring exhibition,  stems from the observation that nowadays, women still find it difficult to embrace a career in the mathematical academic world and the disparity between the proportion of men and that of women among professional mathematicians is still shamefully large.

The thirteen women mathematicians portrayed share with us their experience, thus serving as role models to stimulate young women scientists to trust their own strength. In presenting mathematics through women mathematicians’ perspectives and samples of their life stories, we hope to highlight the human aspects of producing mathematics, making this discipline more tangible and therefore more accessible to outsiders or newcomers.

The exhibition, hosted by the Department of Mathematics, Faculty of Natural & Mathematical Sciences will be available to view on Wednesday 8 March 2017- International Women’s Day. You can see the exhibition in a number of ways:

IWD Breakfast Networking Event for all Staff and Students

9:30 – 11.30, Great Hall, Strand Campus 

Department of Mathematics: Professor Ulrike Tillman, University of Oxford

From 18:00 – 20:30

Women in Mathematics Lecture: Professor Ulrike Tillmann. 

The Department of Mathematics is delighted to invite you along to an evening with Professor Ulrike Tillmann from the Mathematical Institute, University of Oxford.

Title: Surfaces and Strings


Surfaces and their higher dimensional analogues are fundamental objects in geometry and topology. We will explore how ideas from quantum field theory and string theory have inspired mathematicians to have a fresh look. 

About Professor Tillman:

Professor Tillmann was born into a teachers’ family, and attended local schools in the rural areas of Westphalia, Germany. After school she went to the USA for her studies, Brandeis University (BA 1985) and Stanford University (PhD 1990). From there she came back to Europe to take up a post-doctoral position in Cambridge, since 1992 she has been working at Oxford University.

Professor Tillmann is a mathematician who uses algebra to study the global properties of geometric objects. Much of her work has been motivated by quantum physics and string theory. She has been awarded national and international prizes for her work, and she is an inaugural Fellow of the American Mathematical Society and a Fellow of the Royal Society. She is married and has three daughters.


Rosalind Franklin: A contextual account

Friday 10 February 2017, 17:45-20:00, Great Hall, Strand Campus

There have been many accounts of the life and work of Rosalind Franklin, but none focus upon the context. Why did Franklin become a scientist? Why did she become a crystallographer? We will show that there were several societal threads which contributed to her pathway to success. Among these, we contend, were the roles of religion; of the formation of science-strong independent girls’ schools; of two pioneer women crystallographers; and of women-supportive mentors. Finally, we look at her marginalisation as an example of the Matilda Effect. These interwoven strands enrich the story of Rosalind Franklin beyond that conventionally told.


Marelene Rayner-Canham and Geoff Rayner-Canham have long been active researchers in the field of the history of women in science. Apart from many academic papers on different topics, they have co-authored the books: Harriet Brooks - Pioneer Nuclear Scientist; A Devotion to Their Science: Pioneer Women of Radioactivity; Women in Chemistry: Their Changing Roles from Alchemical Times to the Mid-Twentieth Century; and Chemistry was Their Life: Pioneering British Women Chemists, 1880-1949. Their next book: A Passion for Chemistry: Chemistry at British Independent Girls’ Schools, 1820s-1930s will be published later this month.


Women in Science Week 2016

Discover Science 

Thursday 29 September 2016

NMS are welcoming 12 – 16  year old young women from local schools to meet some of King’s most successful researchers and students. King’s Women in Science student societies will host a networking lunch and the students will build their own Lego robots with academics from our Maker Space and Robotics Department. The students will hear about how King's College London are engineering new 'metamaterials' with exciting properties. We'll also be hearing how important the chemistry you learn at school is in the pharmaceutical industry. 


Women in Science Scholarship and Prize Winners Lunch 

Friday 30 September 

12:30-14:30, Council Room, King's Building, Strand Campus

Each year the Faculty welcomes new students who have been awarded a Women in Science Scholarship by hosting a lunch. It is a time to celebrate achievements of women in the Faculty as female prize winners from the previous year are also invited.

An opportunity to meet member of the faculty, such as Heads of Departments, and those actively working on the Women in Science initiative, the lunch is a highlight of Women in Science week.


NMS @ the Movies

Monday 3 October 2016

18.00-20.30, Nash Lecture Theatre (K2.31), King's Building, Strand campus

 NMS @ The Movies presents Contact, a science fiction drama directed by Robert Zemeckis. Jodie Foster portrays Dr Eleanor Arroway, a female scientist, leading the search for extra-terrestrial intelligence, who strives to prove the existence of alien life but must work to combat the oppressive confines of institutional sexism. Introduced by Dr Jill Stuart of LSE and trustee of METI International (Messaging Extra-terrestrial Intelligence).


Ada Lovelace Day

Wednesday 5 October 2016

14:00-16:00, Anatomy Lecture Theatre (K6.29), Strand campus

Speakers for Ada Lovelace Day 2016 include Kate Russell, a journalist, reporter and author who speaks regularly to inspire the next generation of technologists and was voted the Computer Weekly 13th most influential woman in UK IT. 

The Department of Chemistry’s Dr Helen Coulshed has been involved in numerous outreach activities, mentoring and women in science groups, while pursuing her own research in chemistry and chemical education.

Representatives from WiSTEM student society will speak on their recent experience and plans for the future and Professor Peter Main, Head of Department of Physics and Chair of the Faculty Equality & Diversity committee, will lead a panel discussion on the importance of gender equality in STEM and how we can strive to achieve it.


Women in Science Week Reception

Wednesday 5 October 2016

16:00-18:00, Tutu’s, Level 4, Macadam Building, Strand campus

Bringing Women in Science week to a close, the reception will provide an interactive opportunity to reflect on the issues discussed over the course of the week. Learn more about the NMS Women in Science initiative, what activities are taking place across the university, and meet with representatives from student society WiSTEM.


International Women's day

Wednesday 2 March 2016 (3-5pm, Anatomy Theatre – K6.29)

The land of the blue and pink: why girls don’t do physics and boys don’t do drama?

Professor Peter Main, Chair of the Natural & Mathematical Sciences Equality & Diversity Committee & Department of Physics, King’s College London

Audience: All staff and students in NMS

For as long as records have been kept, the ratio of girls to boys taking physics A-level has been pitifully low. The conventional response to this has been to provide more and more outreach activities, role models etc. in an attempt to increase interest among girls. Despite these efforts, the percentage of girls taking physics has remained stubbornly fixed, even falling slightly, over the last 30 years. In recent years, work by a number of groups, particularly the Institute of Physics, King’s College and the Institute for Education, has shown that the problem is more subtle and is related to issues such as the culture of the school, perceptions of subject difficulty, and the development of gender identity. In particular, the reasons girls do not take physics and boys avoid drama are linked and related to gender stereotyping in schools and society in general.  I will describe the problem, discuss what we know about the causes and discuss some possible approaches to breaking down the gender stereotypes.

The main talk was followed by a drinks reception in the NMS Study Hub.


NMS Science Festival

Saturday 19 March 2016, 10:00 – 14:00

Location: Great Hall, Strand Campus

To coincide with British Science Week (11th – 20th March) NMS are hosting the inaugural NMS Science Festival on Saturday 19th March!  Over the four hour public drop-in session, there will be a range of scientific demos and displays.

For more information please e-mail: or

Unconscious Bias Training

Wednesday 23 March 2016, 14.30-16.00

Location: Stamford Street Lecture Theatre, Waterloo Campus

The aim of the session is to provide participants with an understanding of the nature of Unconscious Bias and how it impacts on individual and group attitudes, behaviours and decision-making processes.


Research Careers in NMS

This was the third such event which has taken place, aimed at giving information to UG and PGT students across the Faculty who may be considering doing a PhD.

Maxwell Lecture  - Opening Doors to Physics: Gender and Social Status - Monday 9 November

Professor Peter Main - new Head of the Physics Department discussed  the reasons why girls and students from families with low socio-economic status do not study physics beyond the compulsory phase and why most of the efforts made to date to change that situation have failed.

Women in Science Week - Wednesday 30 September - 7 October 2015

Women in Science Scholarship & Prize Winners Lunch - Wednesday 30 September 2015

To kick of Women in Science Week 2015, the Faculty hosted a lunch for new and previous winners of the Women in Science Scholarship and Faculty and Departmental Prize winners from 2014/15.

Discover Science (for students aged 12-15) - Wednesday 30 September 2015

As part of Women in Science week the Faculty also hosted our first Discover Science event created to inspire the next generation of female scientists to pursue STEM subjects.

Ada Lovelace Day - Wednesday 7 October 2015

The Faculty's second annual Ada Lovelace Day featured inspiring talks from Dr Maggie Aderin Pocock, presenter of BBC’s The Sky at Night, Dr Sarah Barry of King’s College London and Professor Paul Walton from the University of York.

Research Careers in NMS 2015 - Wednesday 4 March 2015

The second annual Research Careers in Natural & Mathematical Sciences event  for students to find out what it's like to do research in NMS disciplines, with the hope that they might be inspired to consider a research career.

LMS Women in Maths Day - It all adds up: Celebrating Women across the Mathematical Sciences, Oxford - Thursday 16 - Friday 17 April 2015

The Society's annual Women in Mathematics Day celebrating the society's 150th anniversary.

Celebrating Women in Science Week - Wednesday 15 October 2014 - Ada lovelace Day

The first annual Women in Science Week aimed at promoting strong female role models working in STEM, and featuring inspirational talks and poster presentation from the fields of STEM

Inspiring Change - Friday 7 March 2014

The College's flagship event to celebrate International Women's Day, a major day of global celebration for the economic, political and social achievements of women past, present and future.

NMS Research Showcase - Wednesday 19 February 2014

An event aimed at inspiring NMS students to consider a research career.

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