Newsletter for Equity

Empa, PSI, WSL

This is the newsletter of the departments for equal opportunities of the research institutes of the ETH Domain Empa, PSI and WSL, which appears every second month. 

The newsletter updates you on:

  • Events (lectures, workshops, webinars, etc.)
  • Campaigns
  • News about equal opportunities, diversity and inclusion in the ETH Domain

Would you like to be regularly informed about the new releases of the newsletter?
To subscribe click here. After entering your contact details you will receive a confirmation e-mail and will be informed about new publications of the newsletter.

Ideas, Inputs or suggestions? We are happy to receive them via !


January 2023

Dear Subscribers,

First Newsletter of 2023 and we hope you all started well into new and exciting challenges! Happy New Year! We will continue our Newsletter and are happy to keep you up to date in the months coming. 


What's on at Empa in Diversity & Inclusion in January and February?


Exciting Courses with Advance this year! 

Also for 2023 Advance has organised some exciting courses such as "Gleichberechtigung in der Vorsorge" (open to all genders), "Presence and Impact" (exclusive to women), "Psychological safety for your team" (open to all genders), "Turn conflict into opportunity" (exclusive to women) and many more. As a Member Empa Employees can join the courses but seats are limited! Get in touch with our internal Ambassador, , or find out more here


feM-LEAD: Mentees has been chosen

We were thrilled how many interested women there are at Empa for our new feM-LEAD Programme! 9 motivated mentees have been selected, who will start the programm with its 4 pillar by the end of March 2023. The programme aims to increase the share of women in leadership positions. If you want to find out more, feel free to visit our website here. We are looking forward to a year with exciting exchanges and insights!


Save-the-date: Sexual Harassment Awareness Day 2023

On March 23, 2023 the National Sexual Harassment Awareness Day (SH2023) takes place. Empa is part of a swisswide campaign to create and culticate a culture in which sexual harassment has no place. There will be a nationwide press conference followed by interesting online events during the day. We will keep you updated as the day gets closer. 


International Women's Day: Advance celebrates

On March 8, 2023 we celebrate not only the International Women's Day but also advances 10th anniversary. Take a look at the interesting event they have put together for their members here. As an official member, Empa employees can take part in the online event, with interesting guests. 


Further News from and for Empa, PSI and WSL:


Article “Success of women in scientific leadership positions must become more solid”

Janet Hering, former Director of Eawag, explains why personal effort and performance are not the only factors that determine the success of women in science. The text is based on the webinar post entitled “I did it! Experiences from leading scientists” in the series “Achieving Gender Equality and Diversity in the Natural Sciences”.

To the article:



It is not always easy to fill scientific committees with female experts, to win female speakers for a panel or to find female candidates for appointment procedures and awards. AcademiaNet aims to remedy this. The platform contains profiles of the best female academics in their field from all disciplines.



Alle_Zeit (in German)

Teresa Bücker, born 1984, is a publicist and thought leader in the field of feminism, work and society. She says: Access to time is a question of power and freedom. Who gets paid for their work and who doesn’t? A good life for all can only succeed if we understand how urgent time justice is. Teresa Bücker makes concrete proposals on what a modern time culture can look like that leads to more equality and quality of life.

Date/time: 19 March 2023, 20:00h
Location: Kaufleuten, Zurich
More information and tickets:


Latest report on LGBTQIA+ people in Switzerland (Swiss LGBTIQ+ Panel) and call for participation in 5th wave

The Swiss LGBTIQ+ Panel entered its fourth round this year. It asked: what about the experiences of coming out, discrimination and support of LGBTQIA+ people? What about their perceived acceptance in work and educational contexts? What impact do the recent legal changes and the effects of the Swiss referendum on marriage for all have on LGBTIQ+ and cis-heterosexual persons?

Report (DE/FR/IT/EN):

The fifth wave is open now with a call for participation in their next survey. If you are interested, check out their website:

Dr Tabea Hässler and Dr Léïla Eisner were welcomed by the research institutes of the ETH Domain during a webinar at the Pride event in June 2022. Click here for the recording: 


Life Science Zurich Young Scientist Network – Zurich Life Science Day 2023 

After two years, the Zurich Life Science Day 2023 will finally take place on site at the campus of the University of Zurich! The ZLSD is the largest career fair for life sciences in Switzerland. More than 100 company representatives from the fields of life sciences, chemistry, biochemistry and many more will be there to show participants various career paths and opportunities to enter the job market. Interested? Then take a look at the associated link!

Link: UZH - Life Science Zurich Young Scientist Network - Zurich Life Science Day 2023 


Interview: We Shape Tech: Role Model Sabine Do-Thuong

Have you ever wondered who is behind the invention of TWINT? In this blog post from the We Shape Tech network, Sabine Do Thuong introduces herself. If you are interested in her journey into the tech industry, motivation and experiences, click the link below.



Event: «Academic Entrepreneurship: Why and How to Promote Female Founders?»

Why do female researchers found fewer start-ups than their male colleagues? How can this be changed? This event will discuss how female founders can be supported and how universities can overcome gender bias in academic entrepreneurship. The event will be held in English and is part of the Swissuniversities P-7 Projects.



“Decolonizing Curricula, Pluralizing Teaching and Research: Postcolonial Perspectives on Universities in the 21st Century”

The conference “Decolonising Curricula, Pluralising Teaching and Research” engages the debate on how universities can use postcolonial insights and perspectives to address the challenges of teaching and research in the 21st century. How can they become more open and diverse institutions that operate in the spirit of historical consciousness, equality and openness to the world? Organised by ETH Zurich in cooperation with the State Archives Schwyz.

Location: Rämistrasse 101, 8092 Zürich. Free of charge, without registration.
Dates: 2 to 4 February 2023
Registration and Information: 


Love in my life - A play with life stories of women-loving women over eighty (in German)

Four women over eighty who love women recall the turning points of their lives in an audio collage. The illustrator Anja Sidler brings the memories to life and accompanies the stories live with constantly changing images. The result is a delicate and humorous dialogue between sound and image, past and present. A poetic stage play about love, living together, identity and free living.

Date: 23. + 24. February 2023, 20.15
Location: Theater im Kornhaus Baden, Kronengasse 10, 5400


Towards Accessibility in Higher Education

Want to learn about accessibility in higher education? Find out more and watch informative videos on the ETH website.



Diversity in Innovation – Toolkit: Women & Diversity in Innovation

The toolkit “Women & Diversity in Innovation” supports organisations in designing their research and innovation areas on a social and cultural level in such a way that employees with diverse characteristics and attributes can contribute and develop their potential. Find out how this toolkit can be applied in international cooperation at the Diversity International event.

Link to the toolkit: Diversity in Innovation - Toolkit: Women & Diversity in Innovation (


Date: 22 February 2023
Place: Impact Hub Bern 28 Spitalgasse 3011 Bern


Article: Women's rights in Afghanistan (in German)

The situation for women’s rights in Afghanistan does unfortunately not look bright. We want to raise awareness for different situations around the world. The Taliban have now decreed that women are not allowed to attend universities until further notice. Read more about the situation in the article linked below.

 To the Article: 



Books recommendation:

“Reading more” is one of many people’s New Year’s resolutions. To help you make this resolution, we have compiled a list of books on diversity and inclusion to inspire and motivate you. We hope you enjoy reading and browsing! 


Lessons in Chemistry – Bonnie Garmus 

This touching novel tells the story of a woman who fought for women's rights regardless of her own hurts. It is 1961, and women are wearing shirt-blouse dresses and joining gardening clubs. No one trusts them to become chemists. Except for Calvin Evans, the lonely, brilliant Nobel Prize candidate who falls in love with Elizabeth's mind, of all things. But even in 1961, life goes its own way. And so a single Elizabeth Zott soon finds herself on the TV show "Dinner at Six". But for her, cooking is chemistry. And chemistry means changing conditions ... 


Invisible Women – Caroline Criado Perez 

With Invisible Women, Caroline Criado Perez presents for the first time an impressive series of case studies, stories and new research from around the world that reveal the hidden ways in which women are forgotten and the profound impact this has on us all. Discover the gender biases that affect our daily lives.


EXIT RACISM. Rassismuskritisch denken lernen – Tupoka Ogette

“Exit Racism. Learning to Think Critically of Racism” is the title of the interactive manual by the German anti-racism trainer Tupoka Ogette. In it, she traces the history of the emergence of racism, with a special focus on Germany, and explains the almost invisible racist structures that have become entrenched in our thinking and actions.


Die kranke Frau. Wie Sexismus, Mythen und Fehldiagnosen die Medizin bis heute beeinflussen – Elinor Cleghorn

From the ancient beginnings of medicine to the present, from the “wandering womb” to the discovery of autoimmune diseases and endometriosis: English feminist Elinor Cleghorn presents a groundbreaking and stirring cultural history of the relationship between women, disease and medicine.


Hidden Figures. The Untold Story of the African American Women Who Helped Win the Space Race – Margot Lee Shetterly

The true story of the African American women mathematicians at NASA whose calculations contributed to some of America's greatest achievements in space – a powerful, revealing story essential to our understanding of discrimination and achievement in modern America.




November 2022


Dear subscribers,
The end of the year is fastly approaching. We decided to publish the newsletter only every second month. However, the content will still be as broad and usefull as ever! Therefore, this is the last newsletter of the year and we are looking forward to greeting you in the new year again! 


What's happening at Empa in Diversity & Inclusion in November and December?

Empa Future Day was a big success!

On 10 November, Empa Dübendorf welcomed 57 enthusiastic children from employees and external accompanying persons. At 5 different workshops, they got a taste of various professions at Empa. They built an electric car or a bridge, played hide and seek in the dark with a thermal imaging camera, created their personalised give-away with lasers or challenged themselves in an exciting Bobby Car race. The day ended with many beaming faces and excitement for next year!


feM-LEAD: Last Chance to Apply

The call for applications for the new mentoring programme feM-LEAD will end this Sunday, 20 November 2022. Apply now  if you haven't done so yet! 


New quiet room at Empa Dübendorf

A good rest contributes to general well-being and also to job satisfaction. To give employees a chance to rest, there is now a quiet room in the NEST unit SolAce. It can be booked via the Outlook calendar "NEST-SolAce-QuietRoom". The key can be picked up at the NEST reception desk.

More information:


CONNECT programm: new experience videos published

The CONNECT program has published new videos of role models and, for the first time, a former programme participant. Watch the videos here. Or go straight to the video of ex-participant, Salima Nedjari:


CONNECT@Advance: Kids or Career? Switzerland’s Unnecessary Dilemma (offen für alle)

Join WeAdvance for one of the last networking meetings of the year on various obstacles to women's career advancement in Switzerland, such as the impact of career breaks, part-time work or challenges of balancing work and childcare.
The event will show what government, companies and society can do to overcome these obstacles.

Date: 29 November 2022, 16.00-17.30, online.
More information and registration:


Further News:


University of Zurich wants a chair for gender medicine (in German)

There is to be a new professorship for gender medicine at the University of Zurich. Gender bias has since been established in medical research by the male body as the common measure. Now this is to change! The associated audio contribution is noted in the link below.

Article: Universität Zürich will Lehrstuhl für Gendermedizin - Regionaljournal Zürich Schaffhausen - SRF


Self-Check: Eight questions for women in academic leadership positions

The proportion of women in university faculties is increasing, which increases women's chances of participating in the management of academic institutions. In this article, Prof. Janet G. Hering, current Director of Eawag, talks about her own experience in her leadership position. She presents eight questions which could be useful for women aspiring to a leadership position or who are already in one, or for women as well.

Article: Eight Questions for Women Embarking on Academic Leadership (


­­­"Swiss Nobel Prize" for Ursula Keller

The Marcel Benoist Swiss Science Prize is considered by researchers to be the Swiss Nobel Prize and is awarded this year to physics professor Ursula Keller. She is being awarded the Marcel Benoist Science Prize for her groundbreaking work in short-time laser physics. She has repeatedly pushed the boundaries of ultrafast laser physics with both theoretical models and experimental results.

Article: «Schweizer Nobelpreis» für Ursula Keller | ETH Zürich


Feminine Charms - Beauty, Desire and Aesthetics in Queer Communities

Talk on the seasonal theme of "allure": legs, breasts, buttocks, hair - in our majority society, female bodies are not only constantly looked at and observed, but often reduced to just a few body parts. The preservation of youthful charms makes one's own appearance a permanent construction site with a guarantee of frustration. Queer communities try a new perspective on the body: identities, beauty and desire are fluid, shapeable and a question of self-empowerment. Moderated by Sandra Lang (sociologist).

Date: 4 December 2022, 11.00am
Venue: Thik Theater im Kornhaus Baden, Kronengasse 10, 5400 Baden


We Shape Tech: Role Model Sophia Ding

Every month, a member of the We-Shape-Tech network is introduced. Questions are asked about the path to the tech industry, motivation and experiences. This month, Sophia Ding introduces herself. Get inspired!

Article: Role Model: Sophia Ding – We Shape Tech


Meccanica feminale: Further training and network in Baden-Württemberg

Opportunities for continuing education and networking for female students and professionals in engineering, mechanical engineering, electrical engineering, medical technology and industrial engineering. The spring university offers exciting specialist courses, workshops and lectures, excursions and exhibition stands. Plus social skills courses and a colourful social programme with plenty of time for networking.

Date: 21 to 25 February 2023
Venue: Hochschule Furtwangen, Campus Schwenningen
Link: Scientifica:  Über die meccanica


«Stark für Frauen – Der Podcast der autonomen Frauenberatungsstellen in NRW» (German)

For about 40 years, the autonomous women's counselling centres in North Rhine-Westphalia have supported and accompanied women in critical life situations. For 25 years they have been organised in the umbrella organisation of the autonomous women's counselling centres NRW e.V. For this anniversary, they have produced a 25-part podcast. It will be published on the International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women on 25 November 2022.

Podcast: Stark für Frauen: Der Podcast der autonomen Frauenberatungsstellen NRW | Podcast auf Spotify


Sigmond is neither man nor woman. Sigmond is simply Sigmond. (German)

Sigmond works as a research assistant at the University of Zurich. In the interview, Sigmond talks about the realities and challenges of everyday life as a non-binary person. Read more about the interview in the link below.



Human Rights Film Festival Zurich: «Je suis noires»

In keeping with the autumn season, going to the cinema is fast becoming a favourite. The Human Rights Film Festival in Zurich is a good opportunity to do so. On 4 December, the film "Je suis noires" will be shown. Among other things, the film deals with the recognition of structural racism in Switzerland, the deconstruction of stereotypes and the acknowledgement of one's own identity as a Swiss and a Black person. Read more about it in the link below.

Datum: 04 December 2022, 18:30 Uhr
Venue: Kosmos, Lagerstrasse 104, 8004 Zürich
Tickets: KOSMOS
Watch the trailer here


Inclusive Architecture: From Social Movements to "Universal Spaces"

How can buildings become more inclusive? What equipment is needed by different social groups? The City of Bern has published a fact sheet on this topic, which suggests new approaches to inclusive building and signage. "Designing for Inclusivity", published by a Canadian architecture company, also provides insight into the development and concepts of inclusive building.

Fact Sheet Inclusive Archtitecture, City of Bern:

Designing for Inclusivity: 


Reading: «Good Night Stories for Rebell Girls»

The temperatures are dropping and the Christmas season is approaching. The book "Good Night Stories for Rebell Girls" is an ideal Christmas gift. With 100 bedtime stories, the inspiring children's book tells about the lives of extraordinary women from the past and present, and has been illustrated by 60 female artists from all over the world.


The SNSF competition for scientific images 2023 is launched

Share the beauty of your research! The Swiss National Science Foundation invites researchers in Switzerland to submit their photos and videos to the SNSF Scientific Image Competition. Closing date: 31 January 2023.



Gender monitoring (part 3): What influence do confounding factors have?

Differences between the success rates of women and men in SNSF funding can be explained by a variety of direct and indirect influences. A look at confounding factors that can distort the results of analyses.



The NEXT way to my new purpose (with costs)

People with many years of professional experience have achieved a lot and would like to build up their knowledge, know-how as well as their diverse experiences, share them or dedicate themselves to another activity. NEXT, the new Lifelong Learning Forum of the University of St. Gallen, will start in March 2023 and support outstanding personalities precisely in this process of their advanced career development.



  September 2022
Dear Subscribers, 
September shows itself with a high workload for everyone. Even more, we appreciate the time you take yourself to go through our interesting September news.
  What's happening at Empa in Diversity & Inclusion in September?

Registration for the Future Day at Empa Dübendorf open now!

This year, the national Future Day will take place on 10 November 2022. As every year, we offer insights into the Empa working world. Empa employees can find the information on the intranet home website. To register for the Future Day at Empa St. Gallen, please contact Urs Bünter ().


feM-LEAD (female Mentoring: Leadership for Equity And Diversity)

For the first time, feM-LEAD is taking place at Empa together with PSI and WSL. It is a 1-year competitive mentoring programme for women who are interested in a leadership position or want to find out if this is something for them. You want to know more? An online information session on the programme will be held on Thursday 13 October from 13:00-14:00h. More information and how to register will be published on the Diversity & Inclusion website at the end of September.


Inclusive job advertisements

Would you like to write your job advertisement more inclusively? You are welcome to send drafts via . They will be revised with tips and comments, which you can then freely adopt.


Book your course from Advance now!

Empa is a member of WeAdvance and still has open places for workshops until the end of the year. They offer different skill building courses and events for employees (also courses open to all genders). Have a look at the selection here:

Skill Building:
Network Events:


As always, you can contact our if you have any suggestions for events or other comments.



   Further News: 

Strong Women Convention (German)

On 22 September 2022, the Strong Women Convention will take place with lectures, networking opportunities and information. With different keynotes such as "KLARTEXT - what does my body want to tell me? " or "Close the Gaps!", the convention offers a lot. Fee applies.

Date: 22 September 2022
Place: Gate27, Winterthur
More information and registration here.


Women's Expo Switzerland

Women's Expo Switzerland will take place in Zurich. The event is a good opportunity for women entrepreneurs to network and exchange experiences and ideas. This one-day event offers a trade fair, workshops and networking opportunities.

Date: 25 September 2022, 11:00 — 17:00
Venue: Hotel Park Hyatt Zurich
More information and registration here.


Seven golden rules for more accessibility

Digital content should not only be created with visual presentation in mind. If you follow the simple rules in this article, you will create content that is available to all users and thus take accessibility concerns into account.

All tips and tricks can be read on the ETH Website.


#wetechtogether Conference: Register now

This conference brings together female tech women and communities to empower, engage and celebrate women in tech! There will be a diverse range of workshops, mentoring, talks and coverage for, with and about women in tech. Fee applies.

Date: 30 September - 1 October 2022
Location: Technopark Zurich
More information and registration here.


Open Day at the Paul Scherrer Institute

You can visit the Paul Scherrer Institute PSI at the Open Day and learn everything about the multifaceted work of one of the research institutes in the ETH Domain. 38 stations with exciting content await you.

Date: 23 October 2022
Location: Paul Scherrer Institute, Villigen PSI
More information here.


ETH Global Lecture Series: "Disrupt, Diversify, Digitise" with Janina Kugel

It's time to change how we see jobs, career paths and the pace of technology adoption with a "fire side chat" from Janina Kugel. She changed the Siemens corporate culture with fresh and innovative ideas — out of rigid structures, towards an open and flexible approach, always focusing on people. 

More information and registration here.


Women & Startups: "FEMSPIN: FEMseries 2022 Autumn Edition — Open Call"

FEMtrepreneurs aim to democratise opportunities for women entrepreneurs and bridge the gender gap in the Swiss innovation landscape. The Autumn Edition of FEMseries 2022 features the new call for proposals. 25 new female entrepreneurs will be given the opportunity to train and take their ideas to the next level.

Dates: Workshops from 27 October 2022 via Zoom (online).
More information and registration here.


PSI Mentoring for women with leadership ambitions: Intermediate Event

Together with Urte Reckowsky from WSL, the Intermediate Event of the PSI Mentoring Programme for Women with Leadership Ambitions took place. There was a lively exchange and input between mentees and they learned about a method of problem solving, peer coaching. The programme will be open in the next round with the new name "feM-LEAD" for interested people from PSI, Empa and WSL! The call for applications will open end of September.

Above from left to right Ana Sofia Morillo Candas, Carolin Zoller, Romana Boiger, Melina Spycher
Below f. l. t. r. Viviane Lütz Bueno, Ching-Ju Tsai, Laura Hennemann, Malgorzata Sliz, Urte Reckowsky


CONNECT goes into the next round

CONNECT is starting again and connecting the careers of women from academia and industry. The next round is being launched with two kick-off events at WSL and the Academy of Empa/Eawag, accompanied by an exciting workshop. Come and see what the programme has to offer and listen to the exciting interviews of female "role models" who have chosen the path from academia to industry.

More information here.


Gender Intelligence Report 2022

This year's Gender Intelligence Report has just been published. The Gender Intelligence Report provides up-to-date facts and figures on the development of gender diversity in 100 Swiss companies. Gain an in-depth insight into current challenges and their causes, as well as practical recommendations.

Read the report here.


BRAINF*CK - Impro meets science (German)

Did you know, for example, that organ transplants are only possible because Surendra Sehgal smuggled the active ingredient rapamycin across the American border in an old ice cream cup? At BRAINF*CK, there are facts to be learned from the world of science. But it will not be a dull lecture. Under the guidance of an expert, anundpfirsich sets out to spontaneously discover the stories surrounding the true events — because the actors don't have any prior knowledge either...

Date: 20 October, 8 pm
Place: Zurich
Tickets can be found here.



  August 2022

   Dear subscribers,
   We hope you had a great summer and have now returned to work full of energy!


  What's happening at Empa in Diversity & Inclusion in August?

Book your course from Advance now!

Empa is a member of WeAdvance and still has open places for workshops until the end of the year. They offer different skill building courses and events for employees (also courses open to all genders). Have a look at the selection here:

Skill Building:
Network Events:

National Future Day on 10 November in preparation

Preparations for the Future Day on 10 November are currently in progress. The workshops will be open for registration from early/mid-September. As soon as this is the case, it will be communicated here and on the intranet accordingly. We are looking forward to a day with many motivated children!

Empa Summer Camp took place with a lot of happy children!

16 children took part in this years summer camp. In a playful and entertaining way they got to know the world of scientists and engineers as well as got to practice their paparazzi skills. Great organisation done by Jolanda Beaton! Read the article on the camp here.

Adjustment of the law change: paternity leave & marriage for all ("Ehe für alle")

On 1 July 2022, the changes to the law in connection with "Marriage for All" came into force. This means that the mother's wife is considered the other parent if she is married to the mother at the time of the child's birth and the child was conceived through a sperm donation in accordance with the Federal Act on Medically Assisted Reproduction. In this case, she is also entitled to paternity compensation.

Read more:


As always, you can contact our if you have any suggestions for events or other comments.


   Further News:

Action Days Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities

Switzerland already put the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (UN CRPD) into force in 2014. Nevertheless, people with disabilities are still confronted with obstacles on a daily basis: whether it is access to buildings, to information or to events. In order to draw attention to this, to sensitize and to inform, the Cantonal Social Welfare Office (KSA) and the Disability Conference of the Canton of Zurich (BKZ) have launched the UN CRPD Action Days. Within the framework of these action days, ETH Zurich also offers workshops, courses and public tours, among other things.

Date: August 27 — September 10 2022
Place: Zurich
Registration & info ETHZ: (Events in German and English)

More events in the canton of Zurich & registration: (in German)


Living Library on Women and Disability (German)

In the Living Library, visitors can engage directly in conversation with people instead of reading a book about specific topics. The women have different backgrounds in terms of age, origin and disabilities. This is about their experiences: and about the question: How are gender and disability connected?

Date: 27 August 2022, 16.30 — 18.30 h
Place: KOSMOS Buchsalon, Lagerstrasse 104, 8004 Zürich
Registration & info


Exciting blog post by Witty Works “Inclusive Language Toward People with Disabilities. How does it work?” (German)

An exciting conversation between Witty works and the DisAbility Management Consultant from MyAbility, Robert Öllinger. In the blog entry, Robert Öllinger talks about challenges and critical terminology and gives tips on how to check your Word documents for accessibility.

To the Blog-post:
To the whole conversation:


Event “On resistance and ignorance towards equality in higher education” (in English)

From a systemic perspective on organizational change, Inge Bleijenbergh and Marloes van Engen identify inequality processes related to hiring, networking, the ideal worker and role models. They reflect upon resistances that emerged from interventions that address these inequalities and identify strategies they used to overcome or use these resistances to foster the change.

Date: 12 September 2022, 15.00 — 17.00h
Place: University of Berne & online
More Information:


City walk in Zurich, focus on “Science, Culture and Colonialism”

Colonialism has left traces in Zurich and Zurich residents were involved in or influenced by it in many ways. The two-hour city walk points out stations in Zurich where these entanglements become visible. The content of the city walks was developed by scholars of the association ZH Kolonial. They are led by volunteers in cooperation with the association Zürich Kolonial.

Date: August 19 to November 25
Place: City of Zurich
Registration & info: (most likely in German) 


Cultural appropriation

Ever since a concert at Brasserie Lorraine in Berne was canceled due to concerns about cultural appropriation, Switzerland has been debating the implications and limits of just that.

Want to read/listen more? You can find an interesting article and podcast on the topic here (registration required):

Definition "cultural appropriation”: Cultural appropriation - Wikipedia
Article in the Tagesanzeiger:
Podcast «Apropos» (Swiss German):


Queer – Diversity is in our Nature (German and French)

Best Natural Science Exhibition 2021 (SCNAT): The special exhibition “Queer — Diversity is our Nature” in the Museum of Natural History Bern provides insight into the diversity of genders and sexual orientations in animals and humans. The exhibition spans the gap between nature and culture, between biological findings and current social debates.

Date: until 19 March 2023
Place: Natural History Museum Bern
Registration & info 


13 days for the queer community (German)

HAZ – Queer Zurich has now been around for 50 years. For their anniversary they invite to different events for LGBTQIA+ and non-LGBTQIA+.

Together they discuss topics that move them: Where are we as a community in 2022? What have we accomplished? What is there still to do?

Date: 30 August until 11 September
Place: City of Zurich
Registration & info


Workshop “KarriereStart Fachhochschuldozentin” (in German)

Do you come from one of the following disciplines: architecture, construction, geomatics, life sciences, technology or education? At the FHNW's Career Start FH workshop, you can learn more about how to shape a career at a university of applied sciences and get to know your options better.

Date: 6 September 2022, 18.00h
Place: FHNW Campus Muttenz
Registration & info:


News Article on the Women-in-Physics Career Symposium and info on WOW Physics Conference

The Women-in-Physics Career Symposium successfully took place on 1 July 2022. The news article on the event is out now. Read the article here:

Further, we want to inform you about the first international online conference of

WOW Physics! (Women Of the World in Physics!)

Date: 9 November – 11 November 2022
Place: Goethe University Frankfurt, Germany.
More Information


Call for Papers: FemInfo — Sexual harassment in the context of science (German)

FemWiss' association magazine “FemInfo”, published three times a year, is looking for contributions from studies, research and activism! In view of the university-wide Sexual Harassment Awareness Day on March 23, they address sexual harassment and other forms of gender-based violence and violation of personal integrity.

Deadline: 15 September 2022
More Info


Annual event of the Association of Women's Businesses “Women entrepreneurs today: We can do everything — even sustainably!” (German)

The Association of Women's Businesses is organizing its annual event this year in the Umweltarena Spreitenbach:

  • “Sustainability in pension provision” Presentation by Monika Behr, member of the management board of Allianz Suisse
  • “Hotelplan – from a turbulent storm into a successful future” Presentation by Laura Meyer, CEO Hotelplan Group
  • “Resilience and motivation in top-class sports” Panel discussion on the topic of resilience with wheelchair athlete Edith Wolf-Hunkeler, figure skater Denise Biellmann, ski acrobat Conny Lehmann-Kissling and bobsledder Melanie Hasler.

Date: 1 September 2022, 09.00 – 17.00 h
Place: Umweltarena Spreitenbach


  July 2022
  What's happening at Empa in Diversity & Inclusion in July?

LGBTQIA+ at the workplace: where are we today?: On 24 June the successful online event organised by PSI, Empa, Eawag and WSL took place. Find the recording of the webinar here. During the online Event the desire for informal regular meetings for people from the LGBTQIA+ community and allies has arisen. Are you interested in joining? Do you have ideas how to start the get togethers? Do you already know about such a get together? Get in touch with our D&I Expert, Melina Spycher! She is about every support she gets in putting together these important gatherings.

CONNECT goes into another round and Empa is on boat. The call for applications for the CONNECT programme has closed. Empa is happy to inform you, that 2 candidates received a spot in the next round starting in autumn. Find out more about the programme here:

Fix the leaky Pipeline Program (FLP) has more open courses in July! Check it out and register for: "Self-Marketing Skills – indispensable to boost your career" (registration opens 12 July 2022) and/or "Emotional intelligence: why it matters" (registration opens 25th July 2022). The FLP offers young female scientists the opportunity to reflect on their professional situations, to develop a strategy for embarking on or continuing their career paths, to receive targeted further training, and to extend their personal and scientific networks. The aim is to foster women’s scientific careers, to achieve gender equality and to fix the ”leaky pipeline” of women in science and related technical-academic fields.

Respect@Empa: Have you read our "Code of Conduct" yet? Take a look at it and read Tanja Zimmermanns appeal on the importance of respectful behaviour at Empa:

SVIN celebrated 30 years! The Swiss Association for female engineers celebrated it's 30th anniversity on June 24th. Empa as supporting member of the association was invited too. Check out what SVIN offers and join the assiciation.

The Newsletter team wishes all readers enjoyable, relaxing summer holidays!

As always, feel free to contact our  if you have suggestions for events or other comments.


   Further News:

Aiming Higher — Women's Leadership Programme

The University of St-Gallen offers a programme aimed at women in lower and middle management positions who would like to prepare for the next career step and acquire the skills necessary to take on a more senior role. As a participant, you will, among others, learn about various leadership approaches, gain personal insights into your own leadership style and development potential and more.

The registration deadline is on 31.08.2022 and you can find more information here.

Date: 3.5 days (seven half-day modules) from the 08.09.2022, fees apply.
Place: Online


Report of the OST "How medium-sized companies attract women to their top management" (in German)

Successfully filling executive management and board of directors’ mandates with competent women is still a clear challenge for medium-sized companies. This is the conclusion of the project "Wie mittelgrosse Unternehmen Frauen für ihr Top-Management gewinnen" of the OST — Ostschweizer Fachhochschule (University of Applied Sciences of Eastern Switzerland), which examined the situation in Switzerland over the last four years.


Project “Girls go MINT” at Baden High-School (in German)

The "Girls go MINT" programme at Kanti Baden opens up new perspectives in mathematics, computer science, natural sciences and technology for high school girls. The programme is part of the inter-cantonal MINT women's network, which aims to increase the proportion of women in MINT fields at high schools, in university and in professional life. They are looking for women in science to serve as role model in the programme.

If you are interested in becoming a role model, or just want some more information, please contact 


Join the feminno program

feminno offers all female scientists the opportunity to bridge academic research with innovation, entrepreneurship and industry. At the end of the programme you will be able to take an educated decision about your next career move or to build your own business with your innovative idea.

Programme start: September 2022. 12 days of training in 6 months.
Application Deadline: 29 July 2022.


Workshop — sound good, come across well — be in good voice (in German)

Our voice is only innate to a small extent, but it is mainly during our lives that we learn how to use it. Bettina Gut, opera singer and singing teacher, offers a workshop for women on how to develop their own voice. Organizer: SVIN

Date: Friday, 30 September 2022, 09.00 - 17.00
Place: Zentrum Karl der Grosse, Kirchgasse 14, 8001 Zurich


"No means No" (in German)

The Swiss Council of States opted for the "No means No" solution in the revision of the Sexual Offences Act in June (25 votes to 18).

In addition, the Swiss Council of States raised the minimum prison sentence for rape from one year to two years. And for the first time, according to the will of the Council of States, men will also be able to claim rape. Until now, this was not possible.


Job offer: University internship at the Competence Centre for Diversity & Inclusion PSI – Eawag – Empa

As of 1 October, PSI, Eawag and Empa are again looking for a university intern for one year.

Gain on-the-job experience in project support and management as well as in committee work! Among other things, you will be involved in the planning and implementation of the PSI Diversity Award for managers. In a great and motivated small team. The CC D&I is looking forward to your application!

Here to the job advertisement


Job offer: ETH-Diversity Team is looking for reinforcement!

ETH-Diversity is looking for a student assistant (20%) to strengthen the team for the development of the diversity strategy!

With the "Diversity Strategy" ETH Zurich wants to underline its commitment to diversity and inclusion.

More information here.


STEM promotion: Commission demands report and clarifications on extracurricular offers (in German)

The WBK-N (Parliamentary Commission for Science, Education and Culture) requests a report from the Federal Council on the proportion of women in MINT professions (mathematics, engineering, science, technology). This report should in particular present an analysis of the effectiveness of the measures taken to date to promote the proportion of women in STEM professions and present a strategy for increasing it. In this way, the Commission has followed the petition "Halbe-Halbe in MINT: Increase the proportion of women” of the "Frauensession" in 2021.


Marriage equality for same-sex couples from June 1 on

Since July 1, same-sex couples can say “yes” to each other. Through the new legislation, complete equality has not yet been achieved, but Switzerland is a big step closer. How couples who are about to get married are doing can be watched in the article.


GEOscience Diversity and Equality in Switzerland (GEODES)

Since 2020, the GEODES committee organises a workshop during the first day of the SGM. The first two workshops were held online and the conferences recordings are available on the GEODES website. The website also contains many tips and resources to explore the different aspects of diversity and equality like for instance (unconcious) bias.


Article LGBTQ+ Diversity in Science and Universities

“Scientists are much more diverse than the stereotypical picture of an old man in a lab coat with wild hair. There are people of any gender, any sexuality, any skin colour, young and old, who love science and research; they are just often not as visible.” In her article, Joan Sander talks about her experiences as a queer woman in academia and at the universities and highlights the different reasons why LGBTQIA+ people choose not to come out in the workplace. Finally, she shows various ways in which in her point of view academic institutions and scholars can contribute to a more inclusive academic culture.


Disability Rights Convention Action Days at ETH Zurich

In 2014, Switzerland put the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities (UNCRPD) into force. However, people with disabilities are still confronted with obstacles every day, be it with access to buildings, to information or to events. During their action days from 27 August to 10 September 2022, ETH Zurich is offering workshops, courses and public tours, among other things.


Online event: Inflation! What to do? (in German)

Inflation is on the rise in many countries around the world. But what are the causes? Can this inflation be compared with previous phenomena of this kind? After all, every inflation is different - what is driving it this time and what antidotes are being discussed? And above all, what is to be done? Economiefeministe — the feminist perspective on economics — discusses with the experts Ursula Scheidegger, Mascha Madörin and Christine Rudolf.

Date: 5 September, 7 p.m.
Place: Online


Vacation reading wanted?

July is clearly the month for relaxation during the summer vacations. You want to stay up to date on diversity & inclusion despite vacation? We have compiled a list of exciting books for you and wish you an inspiring reading.

"What Works" by Iris Bohnet:

In hiring, in promotion, in salary - women are at a massive disadvantage everywhere. Harvard professor Iris Bohnet shows in her brilliant book “What works" that the cause often lies in distorted perceptions that influence our decisions, even when we firmly believe we are being completely objective. The answer to this dilemma does not lie in conforming women to male behavior patterns or appealing to our objectivity. We cannot outsmart our perceptions. But we can change the rules of the game.

"Girl, Woman, Other" by Bernardine Evaristo

In "Girl, Woman, Other," Bernardine Evaristo weaves together the stories of black women over a century to create a unique and many-voiced panorama of our time. An impressive novel about origins and identity, it reminds us of what holds us together. Even though the women, their roles and life stories in “Girl, Woman, Other” are very different, their choices, their struggles, their questions never stand alone, they all speak of the desire to find a place in this world.

“Demystifying Disability” by Emily Ladau (English only)

People with disabilities are the world’s largest minority, an estimated 15 percent of the global population. But many of us—disabled and nondisabled alike—don’t know how to act, what to say, or how to be an ally to the disability community.

Demystifying Disability is a friendly handbook on the important disability issues you need to know about, including: How to appropriately think, talk, and ask about disability, recognizing and avoiding ableism (discrimination toward disabled people), practicing good disability etiquette, ensuring accessibility becomes your standard practice, from everyday communication to planning special events, appreciating disability history and identity, identifying and speaking up about disability stereotypes in media.

Gender Outlaw : On Men, Women, and the Rest of Us” by Kate Bornstein (English only)

"I know I'm not a man ... and I've come to the conclusion that I'm probably not a woman, either ... The trouble is, we're living in a world that insists we be one or the other." With these words, Kate Bornstein ushers readers on a funny, fearless, and wonderfully scenic journey across the terrains of gender and identity. Gender Outlaw was decades ahead of its time when it was first published in 1994. Now, some twenty-odd years later, this book stands as both a classic and a still revolutionary work, one that continues to push us gently but profoundly to the furthest borders of the gender frontier.



  June 2022

  What's happening at Empa in Diversity & Inclusion in June?

There is a lot to celebrate in June: Our new "Newsletter for Equity" is here! This is the first issue of the newsletter, which was created in collaboration with WSL and PSI. It will be published monthly and will update you on topics related to equity, diversity and inclusion in the ETH Domain and environment. If you would like to be informed regularly about new publications of the newsletter, you can subscribe by entering your e-mail address here. Please also share the information with your colleagues!

Do you know our Action Plan for Equal Opportunities, Diversity & Inclusion for the periode 2021-2024 yet? We define the main strategic fields of action with five thematic priorities: (1) Anchoring equal opportunities at Empa (2) Respectful behavior at Empa (3) Equal opportunities for all, especially for women in management positions (4) Life-Domain Balance between work and private life and (5) Diversity and Inclusion. Read the whole action plan to get a better picture of what this means exactly. 

At the end of May, in celebration of the World Day for Cultural Diversity, a webpage on the topic diversity was published. There you will find important information, brochures with exciting tips on different cultures, and a recording of the webinar on "Multicultural Awareness and Working Successfully Across Cultures." Visit the website here.

In autumn 2021, Empa participated in the survey "Career, Partnership and Family" led by Büro BASS and EPFL. In addition to ETHZ and EPFL, all four research institutes of the ETH Domain and other Swiss universities participated. Since the conclusion of the project last month, interested parties can find the final report on the Swissuniversities site.

Innosuissethe Swiss Innovation Agency is looking for additional experts with in-depth experience from different areas at the interface between research and industry. They attach a lot of importance to a diverse representation of its expert pool in terms of gender, ages, languages and regions. In particular Innosuisse are seeking to reinforce the female power in its expert pool to ensure that funding decisions for the innovations of tomorrow are not just taken based on the views of a subset of society. Visit their website to take a look at the target profiles and to find more information on the call for experts and the application process. 

As always, feel free to contact if you have suggestions for events or other comments.


   Further News:

Pride-Month: Online event "LGBTAIQ+ at the workplace: where do we stand today?"

On the occasion of Pride Month, the research institutes PSI, Empa, Eawag and WSL have invited the project holders of the Swiss LGBTIQ+ Panel. The researchers of the largest LGBTIAQ+ study in Switzerland, Dr. Tabea Hässler and Dr. Léïla Eisner will show how the situation of LGBTQIA+ people in Switzerland is perceived while addressing current challenges around coming-out and the workplace. In their ongoing survey the researchers are additionally investigating the challenges faced by LGBTQIA+ people in academic institutions. The questionnaire is not aimed exclusively at people in the LGBTIAQ+ community, but also at (cis-)heterosexual people.
The event will take place on Friday, June 24 from 11 a.m. to 12 p.m. via Zoom and is open to all employees of the research institutes PSI, Empa, Eawag and WSL.

For more information and to register click here.


Tour “Gender in Green" (in German)

Gender is everywhere, but why actually? What makes us a woman, what makes us a man? The Park im Grüene in Rüschlikon presents an open-air exhibition on gender issues. It provides historical facts, statistics and personal stories at ten stations throughout the park. Audio and video files also provide material for unbiased conversations and thought experiments.

Date/Place: Park im Grüene, Rüschlikon, 1 June to 30 September, every day 8h-19h.


Swiss Association of Women Engineers - Anniversary Celebration (in German, but English speaker welcome)

Under the motto "Always on the move - always on course" SVIN will celebrate its 30th birthday together with its members and guests. The SVIN wants to improve the attractiveness of MINT professions as well as the working and general conditions for women.

More Information about the program and registration here.

Date/Place: Friday 24.06.2022 in Lucerne from 15h


Women-in-Physics Career Symposium

A Women-in-Physics Career Symposium will take place as a satellite event to the annual meeting of the Swiss Physical Society.

It is meant to support young female physicist (from undergraduate level up to postdoctoral studies) in pursuing a research career. Part of this involves hearing about different career paths in talks in which several female physicists discuss their career and share their experiences. At the same time, this is the kick-off event for an associated mentoring network.

The program and registration details can be found here.

Deadline for registration is 10th June!!!

Date/Place: Fribourg, 1 July 2022


Fatherhood (in German)

Fathers want to invest more time in their children and family. But often it is more easily said than done. Three inputs on the subject have recently come out.

One is a podcast from the first father counselor in Zurich canton. He explains what a father counsellor does and what he can offer.

Additionally, Tobias Moorstedt deals with the subject of fatherhood in his book "Wir schlechten guten Väter" and in a radio program. He wants to find out why aspirations and reality still so often diverge in this context. The SRF has also taken up the subject in a video.


BiblioTalk of the Gender Equality Office of the City of Zurich: "It's not that grey". (in German)

An exciting online talk with Sara Hassan on her book "It's not that grey". Get to know her Red Flag System to identify the first signs of abuse of power. During her talk she addresses the following questions:

  • How can we as a society become better at recognizing abuse of power in time and taking action against it?
  • How can witnesses of harassment become active?
  • Which classic myths that often prevent us from intervening need to be examined more closely? 

Registration: free admission, register by June 20, 2022 here.

Date: Tuesday, June 21, 2022, 6:00-7:30 p.m., Online.


NZZ Podium: Diversity and Unity (in German)

Diversity, the appreciation and inclusion of as many social groups as possible, should actually be a matter of course. But history shows a different picture, and discrimination, racism and exclusion are still widespread today. The morality of the majority is reflected in how it treats its minorities.

Diversity and identity culture are problematic where they become a cult and an ideology. The "essentialization" of characteristics such as skin color or sexual identity is also a dead end, as is the exaggeration of victim status, which blurs responsibilities.

Follow the exciting panel with guests such as economist and professor of business & government, Iris Bohnet, writer & cultural scientist, Mithu Sanyal, conductor, Adam Fischer and more.

Tickets can be purchased here.

Date/Place: Saturday, August 20, 2022, 16.00-17.30, KKL Luzern.


Comic project on sexual harassment in science

For the first time, the real-life stories of female scientists who faced sexual harassment were presented at the EGU (European Geosciences Union) meeting in 2015. After much support, today, seven scientists are fighting everyday sexism in research with their comics. Well worth reading! What would be appropriate responses to the situations depicted?

The comics and more information about the project here.


Panel discussion at Karl*a der*die Grosse: LGBTIQ+ in Switzerland: Where are we today, where are we going? (Discussion in German)

The Swiss LGBTIQ+ Panel and the University of Zurich are organizing a film screening followed by a panel discussion titled "LGBTIQ+ in Switzerland: where are we today, where are we going?". The City of Zurich (Equality Office), QueerAltern, Milchjugend and Regenbogenfamilien will be participating. The aim of the event is to promote exchange and improve the interaction of different actors - science, LGBTIQ+ organizations, institutions, individuals.

Language Film: English, German (UT)

Language Panel: German

Registration and more information here

Date/Place: Saturday, June 11, 6 p.m., at Karl*a der*die Grosse (Kirchgasse 14, 8001 Zurich, (wheelchair accessible)).




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Publication Dates 2023
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