• On 03 April 2023, the non-profit Falling Walls Foundation and the Elsevier Foundation will launch the first Female Science Talents Open Call for Nominations for the Women Breakthrough Award.
  • Until 31 May, scientists, universities, research institutions, companies with research facilities and scientific foundations can submit projects by women from science and business in three categories: Innovation, Gender Mainstreaming and Empowerment.
  • With support from the Elsevier Foundation, three female scientists will receive the Women Breakthrough Award for their visionary research and commitment to issues of gender justice and equality in science. Each award comes with 3000 EUR prize money.
  • The Women Breakthrough Award will be presented at the Falling Walls Science Summit on Tuesday, 7 November 2023.
  • For more information on the submission process and selection criteria, visit https://falling-walls.com/female-science-talents/women-breakthrough-award-call-for-nominations/

Berlin, 03 April 2023. Ground-breaking research is the key to tackling the greatest challenges of our time. One of these challenges is the promotion of gender equity and equality for women in science.
“Diversity benefits excellence in science. The Women Breakthrough Award laureates are role models for female students and young researchers who aim to change the world with their research.” – says Dr. Imke Rajamani, Managing Director of the Falling Walls Foundation.

The Women Breakthrough Award is presented in three categories. The “Innovation” category recognises the researcher who addresses a gender-specific issue in her research in an innovative way. The category “Gender Mainstreaming” honours female researchers who incorporate gender equality into the design of their research project. The third category, “Empowerment”, recognises the researcher who empowers women or other underrepresented persons through her research.

“We are proud to support the Breakthrough Award as the latest innovation from the Falling Walls Female Science Talents Programme,” said Ylann Schemm, Executive Director of the Elsevier Foundation, which addresses the key UN SDG challenges in science, health and diversity. “This critical work in gender equity–creating visibility and role models through the awards and accelerating talent through the Female Science Talents’ Intensive Track –are key priorities for the Elsevier Foundation.”

The nomination is open to women* working in academia and business on research related to one of the themes of the UN’s 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). Nominees should be at an advanced stage of PhD, postdoctoral or similar level, or hold junior professorship or similar position.

The renowned jury, consisting of established female scientists from various disciplines as well as selected members of the Elsevier Foundation and the Falling Walls Foundation will evaluate all submissions and applications. The 3 winners will be publicly announced in late September and invited to present their work at an awards ceremony and gala dinner on 07 November 2023 as part of the Falling Walls Science Summit.

*Falling Walls Female Science Talents uses an inclusive definition of women and welcomes applications from cis and trans women, genderqueer and non-binary people.

About Female Science Talents
Female Science Talents promotes inclusive excellence and leadership in science and business. The project provides workshops, mentoring and networking opportunities for women with strong science backgrounds to help them break through to leadership positions.

About Falling Walls Science Summit
The Falling Walls Foundation is inspired by the fall of the Berlin Wall on 9 November 1989 and the dawn of a new era of freedom. The non-profit foundation promotes breakthrough thinking and builds a growing network of leaders from science, business, and the public sector to tackle great challenges and make groundbreaking ideas accessible to society.  The non-profit charity under the German law is supported by the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research, the Government of Berlin, the Robert Bosch Stiftung, the Museum für Naturkunde and PD (advisor to the public sector) as well as numerous acclaimed academic institutions, foundations, companies, and NGOs.

About The Elsevier Foundation
The Elsevier Foundation is a corporate not-for-profit 501(c)(3), funded by Elsevier, a global information analytics business specialized in science and health. Since 2006, the Elsevier Foundation provides over $1.5 million USD a year in grants to knowledge-centered institutions around the world, which address the UN Sustainable Development Goals through tech-enabled innovations in inclusive health and research. The Foundation offers a comprehensive matching gift and volunteering fund to enable employees to work with Foundation partners and support their communities. The Elsevier Foundation is part of Elsevier’s larger corporate responsibility program which centers on our unique contributions to sustainable development in gender, health, climate and reducing inequalities.



Olena Taran
Tel: +49 30 60 988 39-750

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