The OWSD newsletter brings you the latest news and announcements from the Secretariat and from our international network. In this edition, we look back at the 6th OWSD General Assembly and International Conference, celebrate recent PhD graduates, welcome two new OWSD National Chapters, and more.
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The OWSD newsletter brings you the latest news and announcements from the Secretariat and from our international network. In this edition, we look back at the 6th OWSD General Assembly and International Conference, celebrate recent PhD graduates, welcome two new OWSD National Chapters, and more.

OWSD members convene for 6th General Assembly

2021 OWSD-Elsevier Foundation Award winners

The OWSD 6th General Assembly and International Conference was held from November 8-19, 2021, online for the first time in OWSD's 28-year history. More than 1500 members from 110 countries participated in the conference on the theme of 'Women, science, and development', which over 10 days featured keynote lectures, panel discussions, and poster presentations exploring three themes: 1) the importance of basic sciences for development; 2) the impact of applied sciences on development and 3) including sex and gender as variables in scientific research. The conference also addressed  the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on women scientists in the Global South, and featured a workshop on storytelling for research impact. "This one really took the cake," said one member. "We all got the opportunity to be part of this epochal event, and we got to know a great number of wonderful scientists making great progress and changes in their fields."

OWSDGA6 on YouTube

YouTube playlist

Posters from OWSD GA6

Photos from OWSD National Chapters
NC photos

I think these kinds of organizations and these kinds of events are making the way a little bit easier [for women in science]. I want to express my gratitude to OWSD for having the space for discussions on very difficult topics. It has also produced a space for mentorship, and I think the coming years are going to be much better because there are many more girls and women scientists involved in these goals.

Adriadna Garza Ortiz, Mexico - OWSD member since 2020

Celebrating recent PhD Graduates

2021 OWSD-Elsevier Foundation Award winners

Ten fellows from Bangladesh, Botswana, DRC Congo, Kenya, Myanmar, Senegal, and Yemen have completed their PhDs since our last round-up in June, making more than 330 PhD fellowship graduates in total. Congratulations to the new Drs.!

Meet the OWSD Fellows

Onyinye Onyeka Akunne

Onyinye Onyeka Akunne is a 2016 PhD fellow from Nigeria currently completing a full-time fellowship at University of the Western Cape in South Africa. Her PhD research is focused on the pharmacokinetics of the antibiotic drug vancocmycin in critically ill children, helping to ensure that they can receive safe and effective treatment.

Munawar Sultana

Munawar Sultana, a 2018 OWSD Early Career fellow from Bangladesh, is working on developing a vaccine as well as a quick, cost-effective diagnostic kit for Foot and Mouth Disease, which infects cattle and other livestock in her country. With the help of the fellowship funding, she hopes her products will be available to rural farmers within the next 2-3 years.

OWSD Applauds

Adelle Onyango

@ADELLEO · Nov 12

I ran a workshop today for women in science, from ALL OVER THE WORLD on podcasting & storytelling as part of @OwsdSecretariat general assembly & international conference!

This was a reminder that everything I do is much bigger than me…which is powerful!


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In this corner we highlight some of the most exciting recent achievements of our fellows, alumnae, and awardees. Way to go, ladies!

OWSD Around the World

Here are a few recent highlights from our network of 44 active National Chapters.

New National Chapters
launched in Uganda and Mexico

  • The OWSD Uganda National Chapter was established in October 2021 with 81 members; it is the 43rd OWSD National Chapter, and the 17th in Sub-Saharan Africa.

  • The OWSD Mexico National Chapter was established in November 2021 with 108 members; it is the 44th OWSD National Chapter, and the 10th in Latin America and the Caribbean.

OWSD Colombia logo

The OWSD Colombia National Chapter participated in a campaign led by Parent in Science Colombia to increase the number and visibility of Wikipedia entries for Colombian women scientists. The campaign inluded trainings in how to become an editor on Wikipedia, where only 19% of pages in English correspond to biographies of women, and 22% in Spanish.

OWSD Nigeria logo

The OWSD Nigeria National Chapter Port Harcourt Branch continued its series of scientific lectures with 3 presentations: on 'Re-thinking Agenda 2063: Leveraging STEM women's empowerment for food security', by Adanna Henri-Ukoha, in September; on 'Antimicrobial Resistance: A Collective Responsibility', by Kome Otokunefor, in October; and on 'Trichomoniasis in Women', by Helen O. Imafidor, in November.

OWSD Pakistan logo

The OWSD Pakistan National Chapter launched a virtual lecture series to share the journeys of young female researchers, entitled "Challenges for Young Women Embarking on Careers in Science." The first speaker was Faria Fatima, who spoke about overcoming hurdles in the research and publication process, followed by Shagufta Sahar, who discussed the issues and current situation of food security in Pakistan.

network icon

The OWSD Malaysia and OWSD Sri Lanka National Chapters collaborated to organize a webinar November 25 on 'Gaps, Challenges & the Way Forward in Research With The New Norms'. The webinar included video presentations from both National Chapters, and speakers including Shamala Devi Sekaran, Deputy Dean of the Faculty of Medicine & Health Sciences at UCSI University, Malaysia, and Shiroma Hadunnetti, Former Director of the Institute of Biochemistry, Molecular Biology and Biotechnology at the University of Colombo, Sri Lanka.


OWSD Pakistan National Chapter members during their virtual lecture series,
"Challenges for Young Women Embarking on Careers in Science."

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