NATO launches challenge for women and girls in science

In celebration of the International Day of Women and Girls in Science on 11 February, the NATO Science and Technology Organization (STO) is proud to launch a challenge for female university students and early career researchers up to 30 years of age, at NATO Headquarters in Brussels on 30 May 2024.. The Women and Girls in Science 2024 challenge aims to inspire young women to pursue and/or further their careers in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM), to highlight NATO’s support for women in STEM-related disciplines, and to contribute to the diversity and inclusivity of women in this field.

The WGS24 challenge

Who: The challenge is open to individual female university students (studying for their bachelor’s degree, master’s degree or PhD) and early career researchers up to 30 years of age from NATO member countries and Sweden.

What: Participants must submit a short research proposal of up to 1,300 words, addressing one of the following NATO Science and Technology (S&T) focus areas:

The research proposal should be guided by the following question: What research idea would you like to see NATO realise over the next five years?

The proposals should aim to solve an existing issue, or prevent the evolution of a new problem for international security.

When: Beginning on 8 February 2024, in celebration of the International Day for Women and Girls in Science on 11 February, the call for proposals will close on 21 April 2024, 23:59 CET.

Where: Shortlisted participants will present their recommendations in person at NATO Headquarters in Brussels on 30 May 2024.

Selection: NATO STO experts will select up to 12 applications based on criteria including novelty, relevance, coherence, feasibility and potential positive impact on society. The young women who submitted these applications will be invited to an event at NATO Headquarters on 30 May 2024 for the final phase of the challenge, where they will have 10 minutes to present their idea to an audience of STO experts and other NATO staff, followed by a five-minute Q&A session. A panel of experts will then select three overall winners.

Award: The three winners will get to visit the NATO laboratory at the Centre for Maritime Research and Experimentation (CMRE) in La Spezia, Italy, in the summer of 2024.

How to apply: To take part in the challenge, fill out the Google application form in English. The submission should explain a visionary idea in 1,300 words or less.

Any inquires may be directed to mbx.sto@HQ.NATO.INT.