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Case studies

Professor Athene Donald DBE FRS


Athene Donald

Professor Athene Donald DBE FRS is an eminent physicist, notable for her distinguished scholarship and outstanding contributions to the status of women in science. As Professor of Experimental Physics at the Cavendish Laboratory in Cambridge University, Athene studies the microscopic structure of everyday stuff, from plants to plastics. She has been a longstanding champion for Women in Science and received a lifetime achievement award from the UKRC in 2011.

The first ever female Professor in physics or chemistry at the University of Cambridge in 1998, she received the Europe L’Oréal/Unesco Women in Science Award in 2009. She has made major contributions to electron microscopy and food physics, studying problems ranging from the internal structure of starch granules to the aggregation behaviour of proteins. Professor Donald’s powerful advocacy for the proper recognition of women’s aspirations and achievements in academia have led her to be held in special regard by a generation of women scientists who rightly view her as a role model and mentor. She was appointed Dame Commander of the Order of the British Empire (DBE) in 2010 for Services to Physics. She received an Honorary Doctorate from the University of Sheffield in 2013, with whom she has had long-standing collaborations.

The following podcast was recorded after Professor Donald delivered a lecture about her life at Sheffield Hallam University on 14th March 2014.

Added on: 19/03/2014