Having a family with small children and at the same time pursuing a successful career in research often poses huge organizational problems. These problems arise, when meeting times do not match with child care opportunities or, in particular also, when traveling (to conferences, in order to give invited talks, or to meet international collaborators). As a result, parent researchers often have to severely limit their scientific activities; those cuts affect women particularly while the children are small.
We are addressing this problem by setting up and running a family room in “Gaten” (A402) in the MC2 building, just next to Café Canyon. This room is arranged such that children can play at the same time as their parents work. It hence allows parent researchers to care for their children in direct vicinity to the workplace, when mismatches in the child care occur, or even to organize local babysitter opportunities for visiting parent researchers.
We believe that such a simple solution could help researchers in all stages of their career to maintain their scientific activity at a high level, while having a family with children.
Professor at Chalmers, Microtechnology and Nanoscience (MC2), Applied Quantum Physics
Funding Chalmers participation during 2020–2021