Women’s Initiative


The ASI Women's initiative aims to involve all ASI members in promoting equal treatment of immunologists based on merit. Gender equity can only increase ASI's research productivity and competitiveness. Our focus is to improve career opportunities for female immunologists, particularly those who lack formal and informal mentoring support and recognition of success.

We provide a mentorship program and discussion forum to reduce the problems associated with the isolation often felt by female immunologists. We also maintain a publicly available and searchable database of female immunologists appropriate for consideration as invited speakers or chairs at conferences and courses.

If you wish to become a mentor for female immunologists, please click here

If you are female, and wish to be assigned a mentor, please click here

Finally, we recognise the need to celebrate success and encourage recognition – this website will feature news and events that promote success by female immunologists.


Applications for ASI Women’s Initiative Travel Awards are now open

ASI Women’s Initiative is offering 4 Travel Awards (up to $750 each) for members to be able to provide a more flexible approach to facilitate women with parental responsibilities to attend our society’s annual national meeting. These awards are intended to support women to attend the annual ASI meeting who are the primary carer of one or more children of primary school age or younger by contributing to the costs associated with childcare while the recipient is attending the conference. The funds can be used in whatever way is best for the recipient’s personal circumstances, for example, to fund a companion to attend the conference or fund additional days of formal childcare while they are away from home, but cannot be used to fund normal care costs. We intend for this award to assist talented ASI researchers to disseminate their findings and build career connections at a conference they might have otherwise found difficult to attend and hope to expand this funding scheme in the future.

Applications are open now until September 1st and successful awardees will be notified by September 15.

Please see links below for more information, including eligibility criteria and applications form.

ASI WI Travel Grant_ApplicationForm2017

ASI Women's Initiative Travel Award_information and eligibility

Vanessa Bryant

Women’s Initiative Councillor



Film and Television

Click the links to see more

A Chemical Imbalance 

A short documentary which celebrates female scientists and looks at why women are still so under-represented in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering & Mathematics). Duration 13.35 mins

Watch it now or Donate to promote the project


Women in Science in the news!

AWISCongratulations to Ros Kemp! Award for mentoring females in Science 2015

Dr Roslyn Kemp from the University of Otago has been named this year’s winner of the Association for Women in the Sciences (AWIS) Miriam Dell Award, for her work inspiring female immunologists across Australasia. FIND OUT MORE


Teaching excellence citation for Ros Kemp

Congratulation to ASI's own Ros Kemp for receiving an Award for Sustained Excellence in Tertiary Teaching 2015. Ros is currently ASI's NZ branch Councillor and Women's initiative representative.


Click the links to read more

The Guardian, Nobel scientist Tim Hunt: female scientists cause trouble for men in labs, Wednesday June 10 2015

The New Zealand Herald, Most people think 'man' when they think 'scientist' - how can we kill the stereotype?, Thursday June 11 2015

David Gonski, master mentor to senior corporate women, Friday 13 February 2015

Congratulations to Professor Anne Kelso, the new Chief Executive Officer of the NHMRC

Rethink What You “Know” About High-Achieving Women, December 2014

The challenges facing early career scientists, Thursday October 16 2014

Unconscious bias and its impact on the gender salary gap, Monday October 13 2014

Equity a distant prospect for women in CSIRO, Monday August 25 2014

The New Zealand Herald, Can you name more than one female scientist?, Monday May 19 2014

The New Zealand Herald, Women in Science, by Jamie Mortan, Monday Mar 10 2014

More women than ever are stepping into labs, but few of them are making it to science's highest offices. Science reporter Jamie Morton looks at what can be done to close the gender gap