Wikibomb celebrates women in Antarctic science

La Trobe University marine biologist Dr Jan Strugnell in the subantarctic.
La Trobe University marine biologist Dr Jan Strugnell helped coordinate the publication on Wikipedia of more than 100 biographies of high achieving female scientists, from 30 countries. (Photo: Rachel Malinowski)

Women in Antarctic research were celebrated at this year’s meeting of the Scientific Committee on Antarctic Research (SCAR) through a ‘Wikibomb’ event.

A team of volunteers, led by Latrobe University marine biologist, Dr Jan Strugnell, and Wikipedia expert and protein engineer Dr Thomas Shafee, created and updated more than 100 biographies of high achieving women in Antarctic science.

Dr Strugnell said it was important that senior women scientists were visible to younger female scientists, so that they understood that careers in science were possible. She said some 60% of early career Antarctic researchers are women, with strong reputations in the scientific community, but only about 10% of awards, prizes and papers at scientific conferences were presented to, or given by, women.

Of the 18 Australian women now profiled through the Wikibomb, four are from the Australian Antarctic Division. For the full list of women nominated by SCAR, and their Wikipedia entries, see the Women of the Antarctic Wikibomb page