Other Events

Empowering Women and Girls in Science and in Leadership: From Discovery to the Market

February 08, 2024 | 3:00 pm | UN HQ, Room CR 5 + Online (UN Webcast)

The 9th International Day of Women and Girls in Science – Side Event

  • Date and time: Thursday, 8 February 2024, 3PM – 4:30PM (ET)
  • Location: UN HQ, Room CR 5 + Online (UN Webcast)

Historically, women have been underrepresented in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics) fields worldwide. Slovenia has been striving for a more inclusive scientific landscape, fostering diversity and creativity. The country’s initiatives, from the support networks and mentorship programs, research funding, and investments in work-life balance, aim to provide equal opportunities and support for women and girls pursuing educational pathways and careers in scientific disciplines.

As a long-term supporter of the International Day of Women and Girls in Science, this year we are shedding light on women in biotech science and industry. According to BIO’s 2022 diversity, equity, and inclusion report, only 34% of executive teams and 20% of CEOs are women in the biotech industry and biotech start-ups. Furthermore, women make up only 11% of investing partners at venture capital firms. 

Owing to a gender disparity in pay, scarcity of mentorship programs and a lack of funding for women-led biotech businesses, women are more likely to leave the sector.

Despite these challenges, women leaders are emerging stronger and are seen as role models. As we celebrate the 9th International Day of Women and Girls in Science, on 8 February 2024, Slovenia is presenting three Slovenian women, who are not only making a difference in leading the research and innovation in the biotech industry but also leading the way in the venture capital sector.

The event will offer an opportunity to discuss how to dismantle the barriers women in science face, showcase good practices from science and industry, and to inspire to capitalize on the incentives for investment in women in leadership positions in the industry, start-ups, and the venture capital world.  


Opening Statements by

H.E. Ambassador Boštjan Malovrh, Permanent Representative of the Republic of Slovenia to the UN

H.R.H. Princess Nisreen El-Hashemite, MD, Ph.D., Executive Director of Royal Academy of Science International Trust

Eliot Minchenberg, UNESCO Representative to the United Nations in New York

Panel Discussion with:

Cat Donaldson, Ph.D., Head of Alexandria LaunchLabs & Principal at Alexandria Venture Investments
Daša Lipovšek, Ph.D., VP, Lead Discovery, Aktis Oncology, Inc.
Katja Lumbar Globocnik, Ph.D., Senior Director, Global Product Introduction & Optimizations, Teva Pharmaceuticals Jake Prigoff, MD, Healthcare Partner at Gaingels & EIR at Eidos – University of Pennsylvania
Mojca Škoberne, Ph.D., Entrepreneur In Residence at Google Ventures 

Chair: Polona Šafarič Tepeš, Ph.D. Research Fellow in Women’s Reproductive Health, Northwell; RASIT Fellow, Chair of VTIS USA Association Committee Board 

Side event at the 9th International Day of Women and Girls in Science that will take place at United Nations Headquarters in New York with the support of The Royal Academy of Science International Trust (RASIT) and the UN member states is the first in a series of events showcasing the work and the achievements of Slovenian women and girls in science around the globe. The side event is co-organized by the Republic of Slovenia, ASEF – American Slovenian Education Foundation, VTIS Association and OnaVe.