About us and our aims

We are a community of women scientist of all stages and ages from the BI and Viikki campus who hope to raise awareness of women in science and promotenetworking opportunities.

On this blog we hope to share events and ideas with everyone who is interested and form a platform for mutual engagement. Everyone, man or woman, interested in the topic please join the community.

Kira Holmström, PhD

FinMIT Center of Excellence
Institute of Biotechnology
University of Helsinki

Johanna Englund, PhD                          

Katajisto Lab, Institute of Biotechnology
University of Helsinki

Fumi Suomi, PhD

McWilliams Lab, RPU for Molecular Neurology                                              Faculty of Medicine                                                                                                University of Helsinki

WMN Networking event 5th April with working life expert guest speaker

Happy international women’s day!

Dear all,

We would like to wish you all a happy international women’s day! And thank you for your engagement in the network. New exciting networking opportunities to follow shortly, we will keep you posted.

Best wishes,
Kira and Johanna

End of the year for Viikki Women’s Life Science Network

We would like to thank you for your involvement in the network. We hope that you have enjoyed the activities and have gotten something useful out of it. We aim to continue to develop this initiative so all feedback and suggestions are welcome.
To thank you all and to celebrate the first year of operation, we would like to invite you to the last networking session this year on Wednesday 13th of December at 2pm in the BI lounge. We will celebrate it with some traditional Finnish glögi. Feel free to bring along any colleagues who do not know us yet. Please let us know by Tuesday 12th if you think you’ll make it for catering purposes.
Hope to see as many of you as possible there!
With best wishes,
Kira and Johanna
On behalf of the Viikki Women’s Life Science Network

Professor Lea Sistonen’s Lecture on Viikki Monday Seminar Series

We have a guest speaker, Professor Lea Sistonen from Åbo Academi University on January 8th Monday for the Viikki Monday seminar series.

On the same day, we are organising an networking coffee time where you can have a rather more casual occasion to talk with Professor Lea Sistonen.

Viikki Biocenter Monday seminar on  January 8th at 15:15-16:00, Biocenter 2, Auditorium 1041

Speaker:          Lea Sistonen

 Title:                 Transcriptional memory and re-programming of gene expression in cell stress
Host:                Uwe Richter
Prof. Sistonen leads a laboratory at the Faculty of Science and Engineering and Centre of Biotechnology at Åbo Akademi University. After her post-doctoral studies in Rick Morimoto’s group at Northwestern University, she established herself as a world leader in the field of stress response regulation. Her work has been key for understanding how heat shock transcription factors (HSFs) transactivate heat shock protein networks to preserve cellular homeostasis. Her current research interest is to decipher the major HSF-related regulatory mechanisms under different stress conditions, including increased temperature, oxidative stress, and cancer. For this purpose, Prof. Sistonen’s group applies state-of-the-art methods to the analysis of transcriptional machineries in dynamic chromatin contexts.


100 Acts for gender equality


The event “100 Acts for Gender Equality” is part of the official programme of the centenary of Finland’s independence, Suomi 2017.  It will be held in the great hall of the University of Helsinki (Aleksanterinkatu 5) on November 10th, 2017 from 13 – 16.

Event details are available at:


You have until October 26th to register for the event here.

Originally found at:
Best wishes,


Navigating the Dreaded Conference Presentation – How to communicate your results and findings effectively

Dear colleagues,
Autumn has arrived and it is time to start this seasons Women’s Networking sessions. On Thursday September 28th at 2-3pm in the BI lounge, we would like to invite all of you who are interested in effective communication to join our workshop with Vanessa L Fuller. Please let us know by Monday 25th of Sept if you want to participate so we can cater accordingly. Coffee will be served.
Topic: Navigating the Dreaded Conference Presentation – How to communicate your results and findings effectively
Vanessa L. Fuller is an applied medical anthropologist, who has more than 25 years experience as an international public health expert and as a member of multi-disciplinary research teams. Currently, she serves as an instructor and reviser at the University of Helsinki, mentoring PhD students, post-doctoral fellows and members of the academic community on developing manuscripts for peer review and writing grant applications and donor requests. She also provides guidance a range of other transferrable skills, in particular communicating the relevance of academic research to the public at large. 
We would also like to remind you of the upcoming  Irma Thesleff Honorary Women in Science lecture on Nov 21st. Invited speaker is Gaelle Legube who will talk about ‘Chromatin and chromosome dynamics at DNA Double Strand Breaks’. http://www.biocenter.helsinki.fi/lectures/viikki_lectures.html
Please join our mailing list for more information about these and upcoming events or follow us on: https://blogs.helsinki.fi/wmn-network/
With best wishes,
Kira and Johanna

Scientific research on gender biases

Do you see gender biases in science? Here is some discussion and scientific article about this issue!



Women’s networking event Thursday 8th of June 2-3pm

Announcement for the last Women’s networking event of this spring.

Date: Thursday 8th of June

Time: 14:00-15:00

Place: BI Lounge

Speaker: Ritva Niemelä from Finnish biotech company Glykos/Career in and outside academia

We will also discuss about where we are with our mentoring and other initiatives and what we have accomplished so far. Please join us for the discussion and share your thoughts on how to develop our network further!

Kira & Johanna