Promoting Young Female Researchers: Panel Discussion

How can we support young female researchers?

In this panel discussion, which will be held in English, female experts from different Swiss universities and important stakeholder institutions will discuss the topic "Current and Best Practices in Promoting Female Academics in Switzerland". Following a set of questions prepared by the organizers, the audience is invited to contribute questions and commentaries.

Datum: 25. September 2023
Zeit: 18.15 Uhr bis 19.45 Uhr
Ort: HS 9

A vexing situation continues to haunt Swiss academia: While students are predominantly female, the majority of professors are male (e.g. brochure "Chancengleichheit an der Universität Luzern", 2020) – a phenomenon called "leaky pipeline". Over the past years, much progress has been made – for example, at the University of Lucerne between 2019-2021 when for the first time since the University was founded, there were as many female professors elected as male ones. However, there is still much to be done.

Organized by the work group "Women* in Academia" of the University of Lucerne's Mittelbauorganisation MOL ("Mid-level Organisation") and funded by the University of Lucerne's Equal Opportunities Committee, this panel discussion aims to bring together experts, stakeholders, and audience members both from within and outside academia. It wants to provide an overview of how the issue of the leaky pipeline has been addressed in the past, what current best practices are, and what strategies and measures need to be further strengthened and expanded.

Invited Panelists

  • Prof. Dr. Michèle Amacker, President of the SNSF Equal Opportunities Committee, Professor for Gender Studies and Co-Lead of the Interdisciplinary Centre for Gender Studies at the University of Bern.
  • Dr. Christiane Löwe, Head of the "Office for Gender Equality and Diversity" at the University of Zurich, former president of IDEAS - and in this function member of the steering committee of the swissuniversities program "P7 - Diversity, Inclusion, and Equal Opportunities"
  • Prof. Dr. Julia Nentwich, Professor for Organizational Psychology at the University of St. Gallen and expert for gender in management and organizations
  • Prof. Dr. Lena Schaffer, newly appointed professor for Political Science at the University of Lucerne
  • Prof. Dr. Therese Steffen, a veteran in the promotion of young female researchers in Switzerland, e.g. as coordinator of early Gender Studies Doctoral Schools at Gender Campus Schweiz (2005-2008; 2008-2011).


  • Prof. Dr. Lucia Lanfranconi, starting from September 2023, Professor for Diversity, Equity and Inclusion at the institute of New Work at the University of Applied Sciences in Economy in Bern and currently Professor for Social and Gender Equity Policies at the University of Applied Sciences in Social Work in Lucerne.

Attendance in Audience and at Apéro
Anyone interested in attending the panel discussion is welcome. In order to plan apero (drinks only) after the panel discussion, we would be glad if you signaled your planned attendance by sending an e-mail to with the heading "Attendance Panel Discussion" till September 21st.

Questions for Panelists
If you have questions that the organizers might want to include in the set of prepared questions for Part I the discussion, please send suggestions to till September 18th the latest. You can also ask your question or offer your comment in the framework of an open Q&A in Part II.