Canberra Wise Women – Wise, Smart and Tech Savvy Event



We all know that technology is taking over the world. With many jobs likely to be lost as industries embrace tech and move towards automated processes, it’s more important than ever that we learn as much as we can about information and communication technologies to succeed in the future no matter what field we work in. This is especially important for women, as we are currently under-represented in those studying and working in the STEM disciplines (Science Technology Engineering Mathematics).

Many initiatives are springing up to encourage women and girls to learn how to code including within the fashion industry. Supermodel Karlie Kloss has created a scholarship to get girls coding and Vogue magazine has recently initiated a Vogue Codes segment. Leiden contributor Claire Gatenby has written for us about her own experience re-training in computer programming.

If you are in Canberra and interested in learning more about tech as well as hearing from some incredible women already kicking butt in the industry, Canberra Wise Women (CWW) has got the event for you. Co–presented by the Australian Computer Society, CWW has put together a killer panel of women working in information and communication technologies (ICT) who will share their thoughts coupled with a private screening of the film Hidden Figures.


The ICT panel will feature four of Canberra’s leading women in tech and science.


  • Dr Merryn McKinnon, Lecturer with the Centre for the Public Awareness of Science at the Australian National University, will be the Panel Chair. Merryn’s undergraduate degree was in marine science, before she began working in science communications. She recently travelled to Antarctica as part of the inaugural Homeward Bound program. Homeward Bound is a global initiative to heighten the impact and influence of women in science.
  • Kirsten Waterman, General Manager of Professional Services with Datacom, will be one of the panellists. Kirsten began her career as a physiotherapist until an injury lead her to consider other options. Kirsten transitioned to IT after re-training in computer programming. She now manages a team of around 100 IT service delivery professionals in Canberra.


  • Ingrid McCarthy, Program Coordinator of Inspiring the ACT. Inspiring the ACT is the local arm of a larger national campaign focusing on building connections between scientists, organisations, businesses, and students to foster public participation in STEM disciplines. Ingrid is the program’s Master Inspirer and will be the second panellist. She holds an Honours Science degree, is a qualified high school science teacher, a former National Parks Discovery Officer and business owner.
  • Professor Elanor Huntington, Dean of Computer Science and Engineering at the Australian National University, rounds out the panel. Elanor is the first woman appointed to be Dean of Engineering at ANU. She holds an undergraduate degree in Physics, a PhD in Quantum Optics and a Masters in IT. Elanor was also part of the inaugural Homeward Bound program.


Team Leiden will be in attendance and we hope to see you there too!



Event Details

Thursday February 16 5.30pm

Palace Electric Cinema New Acton

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Emma Batchelor

Emma Batchelor

As well as a near obsessive interest in fashion, Emma is a former scientist, occasional contemporary dancer, avid reader and self-confessed cat lady (she has three). Emma lived in Leiden in the Netherlands as a baby and Leiden ought to have been her middle name had her mother thought of it at the time and not chosen Louise instead.

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