17 Mar News
We spoke to Victoria Fernández, Professor at the School of Forestry of the Polytechnic University of Madrid.
My line of work since I started my doctoral studies about 20 years ago has been related to the study of the permeability and physico-chemical properties of the leaf surfaces of plants.
I believe that women are as capable as men of tackling any scientific and technical task. In fact, most of my students are girls, and they generally get the best marks. I think the mindset of young women is changing. To me, they seem to be more confident and will probably be able to achieve more than the women of previous generations.
Fortunately, I see more and more female agricultural engineers working as specialists in international companies, which was unusual when I started out in my career.
Unfortunately, I have no role in promoting the involvement of women in scientific and technical work, but I would be happy to do so and I support it 100%.
Obviously, I have encountered and continue to encounter obstacles in a male-dominated environment such as the world of fertilisers. I would sum it up as having to say things more often, louder and more forcefully than any man, and I often have to put up with disrespect and put-downs that I doubt would be shown to a male researcher.
I believe that the female vision is often more detail-oriented and has extra emotional intelligence which is crucial for any task. I also think that, on average, women in scientific and technical jobs are more tenacious and persevering about getting the job done.