To respond better to women's needs, Helena Rubinstein spent a large period of her life in laboratories and around the most prolific scientists of the time. In 1950, she created a foundation for women's emancipation in the scientific industry, and to promote their well-being. The brand was the origin of the L'Oréal-UNESCO award in 1998. Every year, it honors women who dedicate their lives to science. Among them, Lady Carol Robinson, a professor at the University of Oxford, was awarded the prize in 2015. Find out more...
Her scientific project
Brave and determined, Lady Carol Robinson left school at 16 to join the Pfizer medical laboratories where she carried out her first experiments. At the same time, she studied for her PHD and took evening classes. After over eight years dedicated to raising her children, she returned to university and the laboratory, where she turned her focus to membranous proteins. This research could have considerable importance in the medical domain, as it will improve the efficacy of medicine. Promising work, which clearly deserved the 17th L'Oréal-UNESCO award.
Women and research
Through the foundation, Lady Carol Robinson hopes to encourage women to pursue a career in science. This sector, where men are a majority, often sees women giving up for fear of not being able to manage their career and a family at the same time.
The laureate regrets not having had female role models when she was young, except for Marie Curie and Dorothy Hodgkin. In her opinion, it isn't necessary to spend hours and hours in a laboratory in order to perform well. Her own best ideas come to her when she takes a walk around the university park!
Robinson's advice is to follow one's passion and dreams, to not let oneself be influenced by the false perception of a scientific career. With conferences and symposiums around the world, research is exciting and fulfilling - it would be a shame to miss out!