The first Liesel Beckmann Symposium, organized by TUM's Institute of Advanced Study, was held on November 29 and 30, 2007. The Symposium marks the beginning of a series of events revolving around the topics of Gender and Diversity, to be organized by the Technische Universität München every year from now on. The symposium was opened by Prof. Dr. Dr. h.c. mult. Wolfgang A. Herrmann, President of TU München.
The American science historian, Prof. Londa Schiebinger of Stanford University, who has spent years researching the role of women in science, was invited as an international guest speaker. She proceeded to illustrate how the inclusion of women has changed the face of science and outlined to what extent gender aspects need to be integrated in the various scientific disciplines, particularly emphasizing the importance of gender-awareness training.
The speakers also included Mrs. Ursula Schwarzenbart, who is Director of the Global Diversity Office of Daimler AG. She gave an insight into Daimler's strategy of implementing diversity and presented diverse measures employed by the corporation, ranging from mentoring programs and awareness training for executives to the obligatory reports on the gender distribution when seeking to fill job vacancies.
Prof. Dr. Martina Schraudner, who is in charge of the „Discover Gender“ project embarked on by the Fraunhofer Association, provided information on integrating Gender and Diversity in technology and product development. In particular, she stressed the importance of including the various customer groups in the development procedure right from the start of any innovation process to ensure that the finished product ultimately serves a practical purpose.
During the workshops held on the second day, the speakers delved into their respective topics in greater depth while also providing the participating students, scientists and representatives from industry with an opportunity of entering into conversation with one another and of asking questions on the papers presented on the first day. The Symposium ended with an interactive exchange of ideas and views in the form of a world café.
Workshop Summary: Gendered Innovations in Science and Engingeering
Workshop Summary: Gender und Diversity in der technischen Forschung
Workshop Summary: Personalentwicklung unter Gender- und Diversity-Gesichtspunkten
World Café Summary
The concept of the Symposium proved to be an all-round success, from the point of view of both content and organisation! We are looking forward to the Liesel Beckmann Symposium 2008!