RNDr. Mariana Klementová, Ph.D., head of the Electron Microscopy Laboratory, is interested in the characterization of inorganic materials at the micro to nanoscale and in 3D electron diffraction to determine the atomic structure of unknown crystalline substances.
You are one of the ten most cited women at FZU. What advice would you give to younger female colleagues so that they succeeded in the science competition?
Citation count is a tricky thing. One can have great visions and succeed in validating them and publishing them. But even if one has them, one also has to get lucky or pre-select an issue that a lot of people will be interested in. In my case, behind the high citation rate is an instrument not quite common in our country and a decent level of knowledge of how to work with it. But probably the most important thing is the colleagues who come to me with scientific problems that I help them solve. And a piece of advice? Learn from the best and collaborate.
Is physics a gender-neutral challenge for scientists, or is it in science more difficult for women?
It's hard for me to say, I've never been a man. Everyone has their own story. But it's true that caring for children, which is the domain of women at least at a young age, is something of a handicap. But I think that FZU as well as GACR try to accommodate the needs of women mothers.
In which fields of physics do you think female scientists are most successful?
In my experience, it is definitely crystallography, for example. It’s even possible that there is a predominance of women. At conferences, we sometimes have a problem to have gender-balanced sections because of the lack of men.
Who, do you think, could be the equivalent of Emma Noether in today's world?
I must admit, I had to google Emma Noether. It seems that mathematics itself was a great motivation and passion for her. It's almost like she had no personal life. I can't think of anyone like that.