Not Just the Pipeline but a Systems Problem: Professor Caroline McMillen

Professor Caroline McMillen is the University of Newcastle Vice-Chancellor and President and a Member of the SAGE Steering Committee

In this video, Professor Caroline McMillen talks about the importance of the program from the perspective of Vice-Chancellor of the University of Newcastle, one of 32 institutions participating in the SAGE Pilot.  Professor McMillen says:

I came into my science career some 30 years ago and it was very clear, as a young scientist, that the problems of gender discrimination, of issues of equity and women’s careers were really off the path.  What I have found, 30 years later, is that the problem has not been solved. It’s not a pipeline problem – it’s a systems problem.

Professor McMillen says the SAGE Pilot represents an opportunity for Australia to address long-standing gender inequity issues impacting careers across science, technology, engineering, maths and medicine (STEMM). She finds it has proven to be particularly difficult for these disciplines to attain equal proportions of women in senior roles relative to other fields.

Professor McMillen is committed to ensuring the University is investing in women generally and supporting the training of women scientists more specifically. She wants to ensure that students can establish a scientific career and contribute to innovation, problem solving and addressing major research questions.

Professor McMillen says “we can’t afford to waste time” on gender equity.  She believes the issue is not only important for STEMM institutions, but also for the nation.

We need to be able to ensure that we harness all of the talent that is in Australia, so that great careers in science are open to both men and to women.