Photonics is a strongly growing sector of the economy and a major research area in Germany. In Thuringia and particularly in Jena, the scientific and industrial location is shaped by universities, research institutes and companies from the fields of optics and photonics. While the number of young, well-trained university graduates is high, women who hold a leading position in academia and high-tech industry are still underrepresented.
With the workshop "Women in Photonics", the Leibniz-IPHT aims to better network excellent young female scientists with each other and with experts holding leading position in research institutions and companies. During the 2-day event, 40 female postdoctoral participants from Europe, Brazil, the USA, Canada and Australia will present their own scientific work. In addition, professors, group leaders and representatives of local companies such as Carl Zeiss, Jenoptik and Asphericon will report on their research and present their personal career paths.
"Similar to mentoring programs, the participants can exchange ideas with experienced colleagues and jointly develop strategies for a successful professional career," emphasizes Prof. Ute Neugebauer, Deputy Scientific Director of the Leibniz-IPHT, the role model role of the female speakers.
"Our aim is to involve young researchers more closely in the scientific community right from the beginning. By creating opportunities to establish their own research topic, we can make an academic career or perspective in industry more attractive to women. The workshop is one of many measures we have taken at the Institute to increase the proportion of female leaders in the photonics sector in the long term," describes Prof. Jürgen Popp, scientific director of the Leibniz-IPHT and professor of physical chemistry at the Friedrich Schiller University of Jena, the aim of the event.
In addition to numerous regional companies from the photonics industry, the US-based societies "The Optical Society of America" (OSA) and "The International Society for Optics and Photonics" (SPIE) support the workshop.