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Andrea Peto on Women in Science

Female scientists need to publish three times as much to achieve the same results as their male counterparts, our Research Affiliate Andrea Peto said to Telex.

“Add to that the unpaid care work provided by male colleagues’ wives. When I asked a male academic colleague about how he keeps his citation list in order, he replied with a modest but obvious smile: his wife, who is also a successful historian, does it for him for free and without pay," she continued.

"If I had as many scoops of ice cream, as many times I said something in a meeting that no one responded to, and then a male colleague said the same thing which was accepted and celebrated, I could open an ice cream parlor," she said, adding that it is still better than taking women's work and ideas without reference.

She thinks that symbolic acts are needed to achieve change. “We recommended that the Hungarian Academy of Sciences should not host all-male conferences, and this recommendation was accepted. It is another matter that it is not being followed. Now it is up to the male colleagues, when they are invited and see that there are only men, to write to the organizers that they will not accept to participate. If the organizers then replace the men with men, then there is no alternative but to do what I do: write to the organizers that I am not able to attend such a conference. It would be good if colleagues who have reached the peak of their career and have nothing to lose would follow this example. These small, everyday heroic gestures will make a difference,” she argued.

Read the full article (in Hungarian) here.