For the first time, four women scientists are representing Spain in the Homeward Bound programme, which each year brings together 80 women from all over the world to work together against global warming and to promote gender equality in science.
Alicia Pérez Porro, Ana Payo, Uxúa López and Alexandra Dubini, members of the #Accionateam, are the first Spanish participants in Homeward Bound, a programme for the leadership and empowerment of women from the field of science and technology within the context of climate change .
Alicia Pérez Porro, from Barcelona, is a marine biologist who studies how climate change affects marine ecosystems.
Ana Payo, from Zamora, is an oceanographer whose research focuses on developing strategies to mitigate the effects of climate change on biodiversity.
Uxúa López is a telecommunications engineer and an expert in the field of renewable energies.
Alexandra Dubini, a French national based in Cordoba, specialises in obtaining biofuels from green algae and decontaminating waste water.
After a year of work and as the culmination of this programme, #Accionateam will set off for the Antarctic on 14 February, where they will spend three weeks making observations, carrying out research and sharing their results with 80 other women from other parts of the world who are participating in Homeward Bound. “This expedition is a great opportunity for us to observe and study the effects of climate change in an emblematic place like the Antarctic and to visit the international research stations there," says Alicia Pérez Porro, spokesperson of #Accionateam. “But it also represents the culmination of our training programme, allowing us to work hand in hand with other women who lead research projects, learning together and sharing experience.”
The four members of the #Accionateam were chosen from among over 300 candidates from all round the world to take part in Homeward Bound. The programme combines training in leadership, strategy and visibility with research carried out by working groups over a year. The Spanish team is working specifically in the area of climate change and its impact on women. “We are documenting the negative effects that global warming has on women, which are greater than those for men; among other reasons because women have fewer economic resources, less access to education and the legal system, less mobility and fewer opportunities for decision-making,” says Alicia Pérez Porro. "We have also focused on identifying projects led by women that seek solutions to climate change in order to systematise success stories that can serve as a source of best practices."
The aim of Homeward Bound is to create a network of 1,000 women scientists who are leaders in the fight against climate change over the next ten years to work together on projects in areas with an impact on different communities, thereby enhancing the visibility of women in science.