5 March 2003
Deputy Arts, Culture, Science and Technology Minister Buyelwa Sonjica launched the South African Reference Group on Women in Science and Technology (SARG) on Tuesday.
The advisory group, which comprises academics and businessmen and women in the field, will hold its first meeting in Cape Town on Friday.
The group aims to develop strategies to overcome the obstacles that women face in the fields of science and technology due to social, educational and cultural factors. The group will also seek to ensure that women’s needs and aspirations are taken into account when research programmes and priorities are set.
“Since 1990, the participation of women in research, as measured by their output, has not exceeded 10-15 percent of total South African publications”, Sonjica said. “This is an indication of how few women scientists, engineers and technologists are participating in academic research and development.”
SARG is the brainchild of former Arts, Culture, Science and Technology Deputy Minister Brigitte Mabandla.