Anna Rafferty of Johnson & Johnson discusses the company’s programme to support women in STEM.

Many companies are introducing initiatives to tackle the gender gap that still exists in STEM. Anna Rafferty, Johnson & Johnson’s director of strategy in Ireland, told us all about her company’s WiSTEM2D programme.

Through this programme, the company aims to provide support to women in the industry and spark an interest in the next generation to help build the STEM pipeline. It runs different initiatives aimed at young girls, college students and women already working in STEM roles to help create a “more diverse scientific community”.

When it comes to developing programmes related to women in STEM, Rafferty said it’s important to remember what’s really needed.

“Don’t focus on raising awareness,” she said. “Everybody already knows that the lack of women in STEM is a problem. So what I would say is be an actor, not an ally. And do get out there and get active.”


Words by Lisa Ardill