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The glass ceiling in science

  • Equal opportunities
  • Education
  • Science

BRUSSELS - The five Flemish universities have made considerable progress in the area of gender equality in recent years. Yet at this rate it would take until 2050 before there is gender balance among academic staff. Only slightly more than one in four professors in Flanders is female - while there is no shortage of highly educated women.

Sustainability and transparency in the pharmaceutical sector

  • Health
  • Innovation
  • Science

The share of the pharmaceutical sector in the Belgian economy is large. According to the organization pharma.be in 2017, the sector employed 35,711 people and our country exported for a total value of 40.5 billion euros of medicines and vaccines worldwide, which is about 10% of Belgian exports. 

Once upon a time...

  • Innovation
  • Science

A six-part documentary series behind the scenes of the Royal Belgian Institute of Natural Sciences.

No boy, no girl

  • Health
  • Science

Fourteen years ago, Karen * gave birth to a daughter. A girl like other girls, but with a Y-chromosome, that's how Karen describes it herself. This Y-chromosome caused her daughter to develop testicles during pregnancy. Her body was insensitive to the testosterone that the testicles produce, so she developed as a girl. Coincidentally, Karen knew that something like that sometimes happens. Shortly before the delivery, she saw a documentary about children born with a variation in sex characteristics. She was already startled by the lack of specific support for parents of these children.

Controversial Dutch bird flu study continued

  • Innovation
  • Health

Last year's publication of a scientific paper announcing Dutch virologist Ron Fouchier had succeeded in growing an airborne avian influenza virus in his lab in Rotterdam caused a big stir. Though inherently risky, such research was necessary, he argued, because it would teach us which naturally occuring viruses to look out for.

Science Fraud in Flanders

  • Innovation
  • Science

One in twelve medical scientists in Flanders admits to making up or ‘massaging’ data in order for it to match a hypothesis. And almost six in twelve see such fraudulent practices happening around them. They identify high publication pressure as one of the causes.