Women in Science Network

An informal group for women in science to meet and provide places of discussion, support and connection.

The Women in Science Network is both an informal collection of women who meet on an ad-hoc basis, and a means to organise regular events designed for women in science, to provide places of discussion, support and connection. We take an inclusive orientation to the question of gendered identity, based on gendered-self-identification.

We have a Women in Science Network email list that we use to send out occasional notifications of events and other notices of interest. If you don’t receive emails from us via this list, please email Brittany Bennenbroek at b.bennenbroek@auckland.ac.nz and she can arrange to have you added.

Our coordinators

Dr Karen Fisher

"I'm a human geographer and my research and teaching interests focus on society-environment interactions. My research investigates how knowledge is produced and subsequently used to inform environmental governance and management in New Zealand.

"My current research themes include transdisciplinary approaches to understanding marine social-ecological systems; accommodating different conceptualisations of, and knowledge about, rivers and river management; and the potential for indigenous knowledge to enable just and sustainable river futures.

"The Women in Science Network provides a fantastic opportunity to make visible the diversity of women, and sciences, in the Faculty of Science. The Network connects women across the faculty and provides an opportunity to highlight the important work we do, and to foster efforts to ensure we have an environment within which we can all thrive."

Dr Karen Fisher
School of Environment
Phone: +64 9 923 8410
Email: k.fisher@auckland.ac.nz

Kate Hannah

"I'm a cultural historian who looks at the cultures and subcultures of science. My theoretical approaches are informed by feminist and postcolonial thinkers, and I use aspects of postmodernism and Marxist theory to understand the cultural history of science.

"I am particularly interested in women in science history, along with contemporary issues of equity, access and inclusion in science and academia more broadly. Presently, I'm working on developing mixed methods approaches for the application of complex systems to historical data, particularly looking at 19th and 20th century history of science in New Zealand.

"I love the opportunities for deep thinking and development of ideas that comes about as a humanities person working in a science faculty – and the cross-pollination that happens when so many different disciplinary approaches combine. I’m also a big fan of books, lipstick, babies, cats, flowers and food.

"The Women in Science network provides a hugely important connection for women working in the sciences to come together to share experiences, compare notes, laugh, talk and eat. Being a woman in science can be lonely or difficult at times – and the network is an essential part of mitigating against those effects, and reminding us all that we’re in this together."

Kate Hannah
Te Pūnaha Matatini
Phone: +64 9 923 8716
Email: k.hannah@auckland.ac.nz

Dr Cushla McGoverin

"I'm a research fellow in the Biophotonics lab run by Dr Frederique Vanholsbeeck in the Department of Physics. Currently, I am working on a research project, Food Safe, in which we aim to develop a near real-time method for the enumeration of bacteria in food swab samples.

"The Women in Science Network provides a supportive and safe environment for women to discuss the issues they face in pursuing a career in science, and to encourage young women to engage in the sciences."

Dr Cushla McGoverin
Department of Physics
Phone: +64 9 373 7999
Email: c.mcgoverin@auckland.ac.nz

Associate Professor Claire Postlethwaite

"I'm an associate professor of Applied Mathematics. My job is a mixture of research, teaching and service. My research uses mathematics to answer questions in a range of applications: from animal navigation to cognitive neuroscience and fluid dynamics.

"I've always found mathematics fascinating. Although I really enjoyed the puzzles and abstract ideas that come with some areas of pure mathematics, I think my general interest in science is part of what has made me an applied, rather than a pure mathematician.

"The Women in Science Network is a great way to meet, socialise and network with other women from around the faculty. I’m particularly excited about forging connections between more established academics and younger women, including post-docs, PhD students and undergraduates."

Associate Professor Claire Postlethwaite
Department of Mathematics
Phone: +64 9 923 8817
Email: c.postlethwaite@auckland.ac.nz