Efforts to ensure women can ‘participate in science on an equal footing’ need to be ramped up, a European Commissioner said today.

Dr Kristian Olson, Director of the Consortium for Affordable Medical Technologies (CAMTech) at Massachusetts General Hospital Global Health, wrote an article for Innovators Magazine last month, where he said “we must engage women in STEM”.

And Carlos Moedas, the European Commissioner for Research, Science and Innovation echoed that sentiment in a video message delivered ahead of this week’s two-day International Symposium of Amonet in Portugal. He also praised the event for placing the ‘gender dimension of research centre stage’.

“Throughout history, women have been discouraged from participating in science on an equal footing. We cannot progress as a society if we only properly recognise half of the population,” Carlos tweeted today.

And he hailed European initiatives, including the EU Prize for Women Innovators, as examples of the types of action being taken by political leaders to level the playing field.

Watch his full video message below.