Girls'Day: PIK opens up doors and new perspectives to young and female future scientists

26/04/2018 - At this year's Girls'Day, schoolgirls from Berlin and Brandenburg had once again the opportunity to get to know the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research (PIK) and career perspectives in science. About their research on climate change and their work as a researcher at PIK, Levke Caesar and Christina Roolfs reported to the 19 pupils participating. The action day was initiated to open up new career perspectives in mathematical and the natural sciences for girls and young women.
Girls'Day: PIK opens up doors and new perspectives to young and female future scientists
PIK-scientists Levke Caesar and Christina Roolfs about their career in research (Photo: PIK)

The Girls'Day participants were first welcomed by PIK's Equal Opportunities Officer, Christine von Bloh. Equipped with new knowledge about the history of Potsdam's Telegrafenberg and the research institutes located there, they visited PIK's weather factory. In this interactive exhibition, conceptualised by pupils, the visitors learned how weather and climate differ.

During a follow-up discussion, PIK-scientists Levke Caesar, who is doing research on the Gulf Stream, and Christina Roolfs, who is working on energy transition and emission pricing, talked about their work in sciences. How to become a climate researcher, what opportunities and challenges to face in science? Backed up with these impressions, the participants simulated in a role play a climate conference where they tested the potential for compromise and consensus in order to enact climate policies though struggling to find a binding treaty.

As the biggest career orientation day for girls and young women, the Girls'Day opens up doors and perspectives to give access to fields with a low share of women and to counteract on gender stereotypes. The action day is supported by the Federal Ministry of Family Affairs, Senior Citizens, Women and Youth (BMFSFJ) and the Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF). This year PIK was participating for the ninth time.