Video clip: Initially Irene was sceptical because gender has never been a problem for her. Now she sees that Athena SWAN is an important initiative.
Athena Swan, have you been involved with that at all?
I have. In the Department of Paediatrics where I’m based now I’m on the Athena SWAN committee, and I’m aware of it through the Women in Science committee and the WIMM which I’m a part of. And although initially I was sceptical, and the reason I was sceptical was because of my own career, as you’ve heard, gender never was a personal problem for me. When I am made more aware of other women’s careers and for the younger generation coming through I think it’s a very important initiative and I’ve had to think very differently about, well for example, what my role could be in helping to address the problems that I see that other women raise both for scientific careers if you’re a medic, and scientific careers if you’re not a medic.