Environment and Justice, Climate Change and Genetics. What do these areas of knowledge have in common? Anabela Carvalho and Helena Machado, both researchers at the Communication and Society Research Centre, were chosen to be part of the new edition of Women in Science, a tribute from Ciência Viva to women scientists in Portugal. The researchers were in the conversation with the CECS team and told a little about their academic background and the invitation they addressed.
Anabela Carvalho is an Associate Professor in the Department of Communication Sciences at the University of Minho where she teaches subjects such as Communication, Science and Environment, International Communication and Political Communication. She is the Director of the doctoral programme of the FCT “Communication Studies: Technology, Culture and Society”, which works in a consortium with six national research centers. Her research focuses on the fields of Communication and Environment, Communication and Science and Communication and political involvement, with a particular focus on the theme of climate change.
She participated in the founding of the Portuguese Association of Communication Sciences of the International Environmental Communication Association and is a partner of IAMCR and ECREA, where she was deputy chair of the Science and Environment Communication Section. She was also the Principal Investigator of projects funded by FCT “The Politics of Climate Change: Discourses and Representations” (2005-2008) and “COMPOLIS – ‘Communication and Political Engagement with Environmental Issues” (2013-2014).
Helena Machado is a professor at the Department of Sociology of the Institute of Social Sciences of the University of Minho. She is a specialist in Crime Sociology with a particular focus on the relationships between the media and the justice system, as well as the ethical and societal challenges arising from the use of genetics in contemporary forms of crime governance.
In 2015, it was awarded a Consolidator Grant from the European Research Council, one of the most prestigious and competitive funding for scientific research of excellence in European space. Her research is of a transdisciplinary nature, intersecting Social Studies of Science, Bioethics, Sociology, and Criminology to explore how genetics sets off staggering challenges to the exercise of citizenship, democracy, and social control in contemporary societies.
Among his work are Genetics and Citizenship (2017), Tracing technologies: Prisoners’ views in the era of CSI, with Barbara Prainsack (2012), Law, Justice, and Media – Sociology topics, with Filipe Santos (2012) and Manual of Sociology of Crime (2008).
Women in Science 2019: the initiative
Portugal is one of the countries in Europe where the percentage of women who are dedicated to research is higher, increasing the number of Portuguese researchers deserving high international distinctions. According to the report Diagnostic of the National Research and Innovation System (2013), “Portugal, in terms of the gender distribution of research staff in the active population, shows a female presence (0.88%) above the EU average (0, 76%) “. In fact, in the Portuguese context, 46% of researchers are women. There is, however, still a long way to go so that the work of young Portuguese researchers can be highlighted.
The Women in Science initiative, therefore, seeks to inspire young people to follow their vocation and motivate investment in a better world.
In 2016, Ciência Viva launched the book Women in Science, bringing together portraits of 103 Portuguese scientists of recognized merit and coming from diverse research areas. A year later, in 2017, the edition was revised and augmented with another 34 new portraits. All these photographs were compiled in a digital module exposed in the Pavilion of Knowledge.
Today, March 8, International Women’s Day, the new edition of Women in Science, with 100 new portraits of women scientists, is launched in Lisbon. To develop this work were invited the photographers Augusto Brázio, Rodrigo Cabrita, Gonçalo F. Santos and Rita Carmo.