Eindhoven University of Technology: TU/e receives Dutch Network of Women Professors medal for its Irène Curie program

The Dutch Network of Women Professors (LNVH) has presented Eindhoven University of Technology with its LNVH medal. The network gives this honorary award to individuals or institutions that have made an outstanding contribution to improving the position of women in science and to creating an inclusive academic culture. This is only the sixth time since the existence of the LNVH that the medal has been awarded.

Last week, on behalf of LNVH chairwoman Hanneke Takkenberg, the presenter Eveline van Rijswijk handed over the medal to TU/e rector magnificus Frank Baaijens, as you can see in this video.

Takkenberg calls the TU/e program ‘groundbreaking’, and praises “the vigor with which TU/e has devised the Irène Curie Fellowship, implemented it and continued it in the face of adversity.” The program is not only effective, she notes, it has also provided more insight and clearer prerequisites for this type of initiative, thanks to the process at the Netherlands Institute for Human Rights. “This is extremely useful for others who want to follow your example,” she says in the LNVH’s award letter.

“For us being awarded the LNVH medal is a tremendous recognition of our steadfast commitment, and the success of the program,” Rector Magnificus Frank Baaijens responds. “I am proud of it. The medal will hang in our boardroom and serve as a constant reminder of how important it is that we work on this.”

TU/e President Robert-Jan Smits: “We have been able to attract a large group of very talented female scientists from all over the world thanks to our Irène Curie Fellowship program. As a result, we have achieved exceptional growth in the proportion of women in our scientific staff. Our aim remains to reach a percentage of 30% in each job category and in each department since, at that percentage, a minority ceases to be a minority and achieves the influence it deserves.”

The Irène Curie Fellowship program, introduced in 2019 and aimed at increasing the proportion of women in the permanent scientific staff at TU/e, has been particularly successful. Since its inception, 73 women have been appointed to the permanent scientific staff, an increase of more than fifty percent.

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