Eleonora Alei is a Postdoctoral researcher at ETH Zurich. During the Ph.D. at the Astronomical Observatory of Padua (Italy), she worked on atmospheric modeling, developing various models and running hundreds of thousands of simulations. She also worked with biologists and engineers to build an experimental setup to simulate exotic atmospheres in the laboratory, studying how photosynthetic bacteria would adapt to alien conditions.
She is currently leading the atmospheric modeling team within the Exoplanet and Habitability Group at ETH Zurich. The group focuses on defining the technical requirements of the LIFE (Large Interferometer For Exoplanets) concept, a space mission that may help find life in the universe.
Cecilia obtained her double-degree PhD in 2020 from the University of Bologna (Italy) and the University of Groningen (The Netherlands). Her work focuses on the connection between star formation and cold gas in nearby galaxies, with the "fil rouge" being the importance of the gas disc thickness and its increase with the galactocentric distance. Her thesis won the 2020 IAU PhD prize for the best thesis in interstellar matter and local Universe. Cecilia is currently a postdoctoral researcher at INAF-Padova working in the team led by dr. Bianca Poggianti.
Elisa obtained her PhD from the University of Padova, in the group led by M. Mapelli, in collaboration with the University of Surrey, where she spent a total of 16 months. Her PhD thesis was awarded the Gratton prize for the best Italian thesis in Astronomy. She then moved to the University of Zurich, working as a postdoc in the group led by L. Mayer.
Currently, Elisa is a postdoc at the University of Milano-Bicocca, working mainly with A. Sesana on the dynamics of supermassive binaries.
Silvia Celli has received a PhD in Astroparticle Physics in 2019 at Gran Sasso Science Institute (Italy). Afterwards, she worked at the Max Planck Institute for Nuclear Physics, Heidelberg (Germany), in the group of Prof. Aharonian. She came back to Italy with the fellowship "L'Oreal and UNESCO: For Women In Science".
Currently she is a researcher at the Physics Department of Sapienza University of Rome.
After finishing Masters in Physics in India, Tirna Deb ended up on the shores of the Netherlands, as a seeker of philosophy in Astrophysics. During her PhD at Kapteyn Institute, she is investigating how local and global environment of galaxies in clusters influence their neutral gas content, optical morphologies and the star formation activities. She is also studying multiphase baryonic component of the extremely ram-pressure stripped jellyfish galaxies in relation with their star formation activities.
Researcher at the "Enrico Fermi" Historical Museum of Physics and Study and Research Center in Rome, and visiting scholar at the University of Bologna. Historian of Science, she is an expert in the history of scientific institutions and research laboratories. She has worked on the biographies of some protagonists of 19th century science in Italy. She has also investigated the relationship between women and science in Italy as from the 18th century.
Neige Frankel studied physics at the undergraduate level at Toulouse University, France, and completed an MSc of Astrophysics at Lund University, Sweden. She recently finished her PhD at the Max Planck Institute of Astronomy in Heidelberg, Germany in 2020, where she used large stellar surveys, modelling, and simulation results to study the evolution of the Milky Way disk. This research is currently pursued within the groups of Prof. Rix and Dr. Pillepich at MPIA.
Claudia P. Gutiérrez
Claudia P. Gutiérrez obtained a Ph.D. in Astronomy at the University of Chile (Chile) in 2016, working in the supernova field with Prof. Mario Hamuy. From 2014 to 2016, she worked at the European Southern Observatory (ESO) in Santiago (Chile) under the supervision of Dr Joseph Anderson and Dr Christophe Martayan as part of ESO's studentship programme. From 2017 to 2020, Claudia was a postdoc researcher in the School of Physics and Astronomy at the University of Southampton (UK) with Prof. Mark Sullivan, and currently, she is a FINCA (Finnish Centre for Astronomy with ESO) fellow in the Department of Physics and Astronomy at the University of Turku (Finland). Her research primarily focuses on core-collapse supernovae, their progenitors, and host galaxies.
Luz Ángela García
Luz Ángela García is a physicist and master in Astronomy from Universidad Nacional de Colombia. She holds a Ph.D. in Astrophysics and Cosmology from the Centre of Astrophysics Supercomputing at Swinburne University of Technology in Australia. She worked as a postdoctoral scholar at Universidad de Los Andes in Bogotá, Colombia, and through it, she joined the DESI collaboration. Since 2018, she has been affiliated with Universidad ECCI, where she investigates the nature of Dark Energy and the Early Universe with high-resolution cosmological simulations. Also, she is a physics lecturer at the same University. She is also interested in outreach and science communication and actively promotes more diverse and inclusive environments for women in STEM.
Vanessa McBride is an astronomer at the Office of Astronomy for Development. She has a PhD in Astrophysics from the University of Southampton and her research centres around populations of evolved, massive stars in binaries. She is head of research at the South African Astronomical Observatory and an adjunct associate professor at the University of Cape Town. Vanessa works towards bridging the gap between the community of professional astronomers and the development world with a view to helping astronomers apply their skills to problems related to socioeconomic development.
Dr Brenda Namumba is the first Zambian to have a PhD in astrophysics. She is currently a postdoctoral fellow at the South African Radio Astronomy Observatory (SARAO). She is part of the Centre for Radio Astronomy Techniques and Technologies (RATT) group at Rhodes University. She obtained her B.Sc. in Physics at the University of Zambia and later moved to South Africa to pursue her postgraduate studies in Astronomy. She received her PhD in 2019 from the University of Cape Town, focusing on the neutral hydrogen (HI) properties of dwarf galaxies in the Local Group. Her interests include neutral hydrogen in nearby galaxies, galaxy formation, evolution, and star formation. In this pursuit, she uses radio interferometers such as KAT-7 and MeerKAT combined with other multi-wavelength observations. Apart from doing research, Dr Namumba spends her time mentoring young girls through the Kuongoza Mentoring Program and participates in outreach programs such as giving astronomy talks to the general public.
Carolina Johanna Ödman
Dr. Ödman is Associate Professor at the University of the Western Cape, South Africa and Associate Director, Development and Outreach at the Inter-University Institute for Data Intensive Astronomy (IDIA). Trained in physics at EPFL in Switzerland, she holds a PhD in cosmology from Cambridge University, UK. She has done research in several fields of physics and developed educational programmes based on science from early childhood to postgraduate training. She has also worked in a financial technology startup. She now focuses on researching and bringing a development agenda to science. Her work has earned her numerous awards nationally and internationally. Most recently, she was awarded the 2021 South32-National Science and Technology Forum Award. also known as the Oscars of Science in South Africa for Communications.
Mirjana Pović is an assistant professor at the Ethiopian Space Science and Technology Institute, an associate researcher at the Instituto de Astrofísica de Andalucía in Spain, and a honorary lecturer at Mbarara University of Science and Technology in Uganda. She obtained her PhD in astrophysics in 2010 from the Institito de Astrofísica de Canarias (Spain). Her main research interests are galaxy formation and evolution, in particular nuclear activity in galaxies, star formation, morphological classification of galaxies, and galaxy clusters. In addition, over more than 10 years, she worked on development in astronomy, science and education in different parts of Africa through different projects and initiatives related with research collaborations, institutional development, students supervisions, trainings, lecturing, regulation development, women in science, and outreach. In 2018 she received the inaugural Nature Research Award for Inspiring Science dedicated to young women for their scientific achievements and contributions to the society. In May 2019 she was invited by the Science Fund of the Republic of Serbia to be one of the 16 selected Science Ambassadors. In June 2019 she received a recognition from the ESSTI for her contribution and work, and in March 2020 a recognition from the Ethiopian Space Science Society for her involvement in education and outreach. She believes that through education, science, and technology we can fight poverty in the long-term and make in future our world to be a better place for everyone, regardless of where the children are born.
After finishing my master in Cosmology and Astrophysics at Alma Mater University of Bologna, I performed my doctoral studies at the Max Planck Institute for Extraterrestrial Physics, focusing on the chemistry and dynamics of low-mass star-forming regions. After obtaining the PhD in 2020, I won a position as Minerva Fast-Track fellow at the same institute. I now continue the study of star formation together with my PhD students.
Sandra Raimundo started her career at the Institute of Astronomy of the University of Cambridge, UK where she completed her PhD. She then held post-doctoral research positions at the Scuola Internazionale Superiore di Studi Avanzati (SISSA) in Trieste, Italy, where she was awarded a SISSA Young Scientist grant, and at the Niels Bohr Institute in Copenhagen, Denmark. In 2019 she became an Assistant Professor at the Niels Bohr Institute and shortly after was awarded a Marie Skłodowska-Curie Global fellowship to carry out a research project at UCLA (University of California Los Angeles) in the US. In July 2020 she moved to a permanent position as a Lecturer (Assistant Professor) in Astronomy at the University of Southampton, UK. Sandra’s work focusses on the study of the physics of supermassive black holes and Active Galactic Nuclei and on the evolution of galaxies and their central black holes.
María Concepción Cárdenas Vázquez
Dr M. Concepción Cárdenas graduated in Physics at the University of Granada (UGR), Spain. She worked for 16 years as an optical engineer at the Institute of Astrophysics of Andalusia (IAA-CSIC, Spain), where, among others responsibilities, she has been the optical lead of the wide-field infrared camera PANIC and of the infrared channel of the spectrograph CARMENES (both instruments belong to the Calar Alto Observatory, Almería, Spain).
After finishing and commissioning these two instruments, she moved on a position as Senior Optical Engineer at the Max-Plack Institut für Astronomie (Germany) early 2016, where she works for METIS (Mid-infrared ELT Imager and Spectrograph for the Extremely Large Telescope) and the Relay Optics of MICADO (Multi-AO Imaging Camera for Deep Observations), both instruments for the Extremely Large Telescope.
She conducted her PhD, “PANIC, una cámara infrarroja de gran campo para el Observatorio de Calar Alto”, at the IAA-CSIC, for which she was awarded two prizes: in June 2019, the prize for the best Spanish PhD in Instrumentation, Computing and Technological Development in Astronomy and Astrophysics, 2017-2018, by the Spanish Astronomical Society; and in March, 2020, the MERAC Prize 2020 Best Doctoral Thesis Prize in New Technology (Instrumental)by the European Astronomical Society.