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Londa Schiebinger

John L. Hinds Professor of History of Science
Director, Gendered Innovations in Science, Health & Medicine, Engineering, and Environment Project
Ph.D., Harvard University (1984)
M.A., Harvard University (1977)
B.A., University of Nebraska (1974)

Londa Schiebinger is the John L. Hinds Professor of History of Science in the History Department at Stanford University and Director of the EU/US Gendered Innovations in Science, Health & Medicine, Engineering, and Environment Project. From 2004-2010, Schiebinger served as the Director of Stanford's Clayman Institute for Gender Research. She is a member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences.

Professor Schiebinger received her Ph.D. from Harvard University in 1984 and is a leading international authority on gender and science. Over the past thirty years, Schiebinger's work has been devoted to teasing apart three analytically distinct but interlocking pieces of the gender and science puzzle: the history of women's participation in science; gender in the structure of scientific institutions; and the gendering of human knowledge.

Londa Schiebinger presented the keynote address and wrote the conceptual background paper for the United Nations' Expert Group Meeting on Gender, Science, and Technology, September 2010 in Paris. She presented the findings at the United Nations in New York, February 2011 with an update spring 2014. The UN Resolutions of March 2011 call for "gender-based analysis ... in science and technology" and for the integrations of a "gender perspective in science and technology curricula." Again in 2022, she prepared the background paper for the United Nations 67th session of the Commission on the Status of Women’s priority theme, Innovation and Technological Change, and Education in the Digital Age for Achieving Gender Equality and The Empowerment of all Women and Girls.

In 2011-2014, Schiebinger entered into major collaborations with the European Commission and the U.S. National Science Foundation to promote Gendered Innovations in Science, Health & Medicine, Engineering, and Environment. This project draws experts from across the U.S., Europe, Canada, Asia, and was presented at the European Parliament, July 2013 as Gendered Innovations: How Gender Analysis Contributes to Research. In 2018-2020, Schiebinger directed the European Commission Expert Group to produce Gendered Innovations 2: How Inclusive Analysis Contributes to Research and Innovation.

Schiebinger has addressed the Korean National Assembly (2014). In 2015, she addressed 600 participants from 40 countries on Gendered Innovations at the Gender Summit 6—Asia Pacific, a meeting devoted to gendered innovations in research, development, and business. She spoke at the Gender Summit 10 in Tokyo in 2017. She has given seminars at the Japanese Science and Technology Agency in Tokyo, the Japanese Science Council, at Nature magazine in London, the George Institute in Sydney, the Royal Palace in Amsterdam, L'Oréal and UNESCO in Paris, the Global Research Council in São Paulo, the German Science Foundation in Bonn, and UK Research and Innovation in London, and the EDIS Symposium on Inclusive Research and Experimental Design, Francis Crick Institute in London, among others.

Schiebinger’s work has been featured in ScienceA Framework for Sex, Gender, and Diversity Analysis in Research: Funding Agencies Have Ample Room to Improve Their Policies (2022); NatureSex and Gender Analysis Improves Science and Engineering (2019); Nature:Design AI so that it's Fair (2018); NatureAccounting for Sex and Gender makes for Better Science (2020); and Nature: The Researcher Fighting to Embed Analysis of Sex and Gender into Science (2020). A seven-minute segment on Deutsche Welle’s Science Magazine Tomorrow Today (April 3, 2021) showcased her work on Gendered Innovations. A 30-minute interview on gender in science (2013) can be seen on Belgian television. Recent podcasts include: Skeleton Wars, the History of Women in Science (2018), The Secret Cures of Slaves (2018), and The Future of Everything (2019). See also The Robots are Coming! But Should They be Gendered? (2019). Schiebinger served as a member of the Faculty Planning Committee for the Stanford Human-Centered AI Institute.

Schiebinger's work in the eighteenth century investigates the circulation of knowledge in the Atlantic World. In particular she explores medical experimentation with enslaved populations in the Caribbean. Her Secret Cures of Slaves: People, Plants, and Medicine in the Eighteenth-Century Atlantic World reconceptualizes research in four areas: first and foremost knowledge of African contributions to early modern science; the historiography of race in science; the history of human experimentation; and the role of science in the eighteenth-century Atlantic world. Her prize-winning Plants and Empire: Colonial Bioprospecting in the Atlantic World investigates women's indigenous knowledge of abortifacients and why this knowledge did not travel.

Londa Schiebinger has been the recipient of numerous prizes and awards, including the prestigious Alexander von Humboldt Research Prize and John Simon Guggenheim Fellowship. Schiebinger has just been appointed a Distinguished Affiliated Professor at the Technische Universität, Münichen, and member of their Institute for Advanced Studies. She has also served as a Senior Research Fellow at the Max-Planck-Institut für Wissenschaftsgeschichte in Berlin, the Jantine Tammes Chair in the Faculty of Mathematics and Natural Sciences at the University of Groningen, a guest professor at the Georg-August-Universität in Göttingen, and the Maria Goeppert-Meyer Distinguished Visitor, Oldenburg University. Her research has been supported by the National Science Foundation, National Institutes of Health, National Endowment for the Humanities, Rockefeller Foundation, Fulbright-Hays Commission, Woodrow Wilson Foundation, and Deutscher Akademischer Austauschdienst.

Londa Schiebinger was awarded an honorary doctorate from the Vrije Universiteit Brussel (2013), the Faculty of Science, Lund University, Sweden (2017), and the University of Valencia, Spain (2018); the Berlin Falling Walls Breakthrough Winner in Science & Innovation Management (2022); the Interdisciplinary Leadership Award from Women's Health at Stanford Medical School, 2010; Prize in Atlantic History from the American Historical Association, 2005 and the Alf Andrew Heggoy Book Prize from the French Colonial Historical Society, 2005, both for her Plants and Empire: Colonial Bioprospecting in the Atlantic World. She also won the 2005 J. Worth Estes Prize from the American Association for the History of Medicine for her article "Feminist History of Colonial Science," Hypatia 19 (2004): 233-254. This prize goes to the author of an article of outstanding scholarly merit in the history of pharmacology. Her work has been translated into thirteen languages. In 2022/23, she served as an advisor to the Berlin University Alliance.

Londa Schiebinger's research has been featured in Forbesthe Times Higher EducationLe MondeLa RechercheWorld Economic ForumEl PaísThe New YorkerDiscovHerEuroScientistUniversity World NewsMoneyish, the New York Times, Die Zeit, Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitschrift, La Vanguardia, at the London Museum of Natural History, on NPR, and elsewhere. She speaks and consults nationally and internationally on gender in science, medicine, and engineering.

Fields of Interest

the gender and science puzzle: the history of women's participation in science; the structure of scientific institutions; and the gendering of human knowledge