Laura María Lechuga Gómez from Seville was the winner of the seventh Ada Byron Award for Women Technologists organised by the Faculty of Engineering of the University of Deusto; and the Young Ada Byron Award went to Susana Ladra González from Galicia. This Ada Byron award has Microsoft’s gold sponsorship, and it also sponsored by the Biscay Regional Council, Danobat Group and Emakunde-Basque Women's Institute; and it has the collaboration of Innobasque and Basque HealthCluster. The awards were presented on 29 October as part of the Deusto Engineering and Technology Week, ForoTech 2020.
Laura María Lechuga Gómez holds a degree in Chemistry and is currently a research professor at the CSIC in Barcelona, Head of the Nanobiosensors and Bioanalytical Applications Group at the Institut Català de Nanociència i Nanotecnologí (ICN2, Barcelona) and at CIBER-BBN. Her research area focuses on Nanomedicine, Nanodiagnostics and the technological development of nanophotonic biosensors and their integration in portable Point-of-Care (POC) platforms, as well as their application in decentralised clinical and environmental diagnostics.
Galician Susana Ladra González was awarded the Young Ada Byron Award. She is an engineer and holds a PhD in Computer Science and she is a graduate in Mathematics. Ladra is Professor of Computer Languages and Systems (University of A Coruña) and coordinator of the STEMbach programme at the University of A Coruña (UDC), which aims to promote STEM vocations, particularly among women. She currently holds the positions of director of the Innova Campus of the UDC and vice-president of the Professional Association of Computer Engineering of Galicia. She is also a member of the working group of the ICT City in A Coruña (ICT innovation ecosystem project). She was a founding member (and vice-president) of the Galician node of the Association of Women Researchers and Technologists (AMIT-gal) and is involved in scientific dissemination. She collaborates in science outreach projects with Museos Científicos Coruñeses, and she leads numerous actions for scientific dissemination and visibility of women in engineering.
The Ada Byron Prize for Women Technologists, a state-wide award, was created by the University of Deusto’s Engineering Faculty with the aim of encouraging women's vocations in the field of technological research and development; to enhance the importance of technology in all areas of life and for social development, as well as to give value to the work and achievements that the performance of these tasks and studies by women have contributed to humanity.
This award aims to:
- Give visibility to women in the world of technology recognising their outstanding work, still not widely known for society at large.
- Enrich society with technological outreach events, providing female models to new generations.
- Promote technological vocations by bringing technology closer to female young people, highlighting the positive aspects, especially on female vocations.
- Make the importance of technology for economic growth and as a future value for society more socially visible.
- Contribute to the achievement of Sustainable Development Goal 5 of the 2030 Global Agenda: "Achieve gender equality and empower all women and girls".