Launch of Women in STEM Edition of DIT Research News Magazine

Featuring four academics from within the School of Computing the latest edition of the DIT Research News magazine was launched on the eve of International Women's Day. This special edition of the magazine included a featured interview with Dr Deirdre Lillis, the Head of the School, where she spoke about her recent appointment to the board of the HEA as well as her management of the EU-Erasmus+ Knowledge Alliance funded HUBLinked project. Dr Lillis also spoke about the challenges educators face in addressing gender imbalance within STEM where in many instances 'departments are staffed by males who do not see this as an issue' whereas within the School of Computing at DIT 'our female students typically succeed. I think that is partly because there are role models here. I'm Head of School, Dr Sarah Jane Delany is Assistant Head, two of our senior lecturers and a lot of our staff are women.'

The magazine also featured an article on Data Analytics with Professor Sarah Jane Delany entitled 'Keeping up with Data Boom'. Professor Delany is the co-founder of the Applied Intelligence Research Centre (AIRC) at DIT as well as a Principal Investigator with CeADAR. Speaking about the work CeADAR does Prof. Delany spoke of 'identifying and anlaysing issues industry face and working with them on finding data-driven solutions offered by AI and Machine Learning Technologies.'

Two of DIT School of Computing's current PhD students Mariana Rocha and Elizabeth Hunter were also in attendance at the launch and their respective work on educational gaming and the computer modelling of disease outbreak also featured in the magazine.

Computing PhD student Mariana Rocha's interest in how technology can help people to learn has lead her to develop and design a new game aimed at teaching primary school children mathematics. Speaking about her work Ms Rocha said she "believed that using different types of media and technologies to communicate STEM learning is key to making children more engaged and motivated to learn."

The magazine also featured a piece on the work of Elizabeth Hunter a PhD student currently working under the supervision of Prof. John Kelleher. Ms. Hunter's work on using agent-based models to create infectious disease simulations within Ireland will mean that policy makers and public health officials will be better prepared in the event of an infectious outbreak.

Research impact, gender equality and women’s empowerment were some of the themes highlighted at the Magazine Launch where Professor Brian Norton, President of DIT, welcomed more than 100 guests. Professor Norton commented that the day should be seen as a serious opportunity to highlight the importance of gender equality. “It is important for society as a whole to recognize and overcome conscious and unconscious bias in all aspects of life. DIT has wholeheartedly committed to promoting gender equality and we will use the opportunity afforded by the Athena SWAN framework to develop our action plan and to implement it.”

You can check out the Research News magazine online here, or if you would like some copies for your organisation, email

  • Women In STEM