One of the most powerful ways of presenting roles of women in science and engineering (SET) is through television. TV Drama in particular can present women scientists in human situations with which the public can identify, as well as painting an exciting picture of science. Such role and lifestyle models are much needed if more young women are to be attracted to careers in SET, and European culture generally is to reflect our rapidly changing world. EuroPAWS, the European TV drama Project in SET, carried out an EC supported action research project, ASSEND, and this EuroWistdom project builds on its recommendations. To achieve a breakthrough, a key step is to convince Europe's TV writers and producers that many appealing scenarios can now be found in SET.
The plan is to offer financial and intellectual incentives for leading writers and producers to take up SET settings and cast women in leading roles. Six grants of 7,000 Euros will be offered Europe-wide for the development of new drama treatments for TV series or feature length plays involving women in SET, suitable for a European audience. This sum has been tested in UK PAWS following the ASSEND experience and found effective. To attract writers and producers and publicise good themes in SET and the role of women, a major publicity initiative will be set up with a Launch event in Germany, where project co-ordinator FEMTEC focuses on Women into Engineering, and two major SET evenings for writers in France and Slovenia (featuring women in SET as tested in the UK).
Europe's Writers and Producers guilds will be mobilised via the project partner Euro-MEI, and Europe's scientists by Euroscience, and networking opportunities pursued. The EuroPAWS and FEMTEC websites will carry writer-friendly promotion. Writers will also be partnered with scientists to advise them on the SET background in the writers' areas of interest.
Call for proposal
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Funding SchemeSSA - Specific Support Action