Gender Equality Committee

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Event under the high patronage of H.R.H. The Grand Duchess of Luxembourg

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5th March 2024

15:00 -16:30 CET


Online Conference on this webpage


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Welcoming Note

Keynote Speaker




The agenda

15:00 – 15:05

Institutional Welcome - Prof. Dr. Jens Kreisel Rector of the University of Luxembourg

15:05 – 15:30

Keynote Speech by Prof. Daphna Joel

15:30 – 16:30

Panel Session by Prof. Anja Leist, Prof. Daphna Joel, Dr. Cat Bohannon, Prof. Anastasia Litina.

16:30 – 17:00

Q&A session and conclusion


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Gender Equality Committee

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Tanya Beckett

Broadcaster, Public speaker, Communications Advisor – Moderator

Tanya Beckett has worked in broadcasting and the media for over 20 years. She started out at the FT, then went to work for CNBC, Sky News, CNN and since 1998, the BBC.

She has worked on a variety of programmes on BBC World News, the BBC News Channel, Radio 4 and BBC1 and BBC2 including The Inquiry, Our World, Working Lunch, Today, Newsnight and World Business Report. She also spent three years living in and reporting from New York for the BBC.

Tanya also works with the World Bank, Chatham House, the Somali Government and the British Foreign Office in matters relating to trade and communication. She is currently writing and presenting BBC current affairs radio documentary The Inquiry. Tanya has a degree from Oxford University in Metallurgy and Materials Science and spent five years as an investment banker in Frankfurt and London.

Prof.  Jens Kreisel

Jens Kreisel assumed the role of rector at the University of Luxembourg on January 1, 2023. With a background in physics and materials sciences, prof. Kreisel earned his PhD from the Grenoble Institute of Technology in 1999. Prior to his appointment as rector, he held positions including Director of Research at CNRS in Grenoble, Vice-Rector for Research at the University of Luxembourg, and Founding Director of the Materials Research and Technology department at the Luxembourg Institute of Science and Technology. His research focuses on the understanding of structural and physical properties of functional materials and he is internationally recognised for his expertise in optical spectroscopy. Jens Kreisel is the author of more than 150 publications, has acquired substantial experience in the management of universities as well as research institutions and is also a passionate teacher and mentor. As rector he sees his responsibility in facilitating and stimulating top science, high-quality teaching and trusted partnership with the society at large.

Prof. Daphna Joel

Prof. Daphna Joel received her Ph.D. in psychology in Tel-Aviv University (TAU) in 1998, and joined the faculty of TAU, after receiving the Alon fellowship for young Israeli scientists. She is currently a member of the School of Psychological Sciences and of the Sagol School of Neuroscience. Prof. Joel studied the involvement of basal ganglia-thalamocortical circuits in normal and abnormal behavior, using mainly animal models of psychopathology. More recently she has expanded her work to research questions related to brain, sex and gender. Prof. Joel has published over 70 papers in refereed scientific journals and is also the author of Gender Mosaic: Beyond the Myth of the Male and Female Brain (Little, Brown, NY).

Prof. Anja Leist

Anja Leist is Associate Professor in Public Health and Ageing, Vice-Head of the Institute for Research on Socio-Economic Inequality at the University of Luxembourg (UL), and Special Advisor to the Rector on the topic of research assessment. Her research focuses on cognitive ageing and dementia from a social and behavioural risk reduction perspective and is funded, among others, by the European Research Council (CRISP, grant agreement no. 803239). Specifically, CRISP confirmed relevant contextual-level influences on cognitive ageing and dementia related to inequalities in educational opportunity, socioeconomic conditions, and sex/gender, as well as produced insights on modifiable risk factors and factors relevant for women’s brain health. Anja’s research currently informs the development of a digital platform to promote brain health at the workplace. She co-leads the MCI-BIOME project, funded by the UL Institute for Advanced Studies, which investigates the relationships between sociodemographic and modifiable risk factors for dementia, the gut microbiome, and Mild Cognitive Impairment. Anja is elected Fellow of the Gerontological Society of America and co-founder of the non-profit organisation World Young Leaders in Dementia (WYLD) network that facilitates careers of young professionals in dementia globally. She serves as mentor on the ADVANCE mentoring programme of UL as well as on several Scientific Advisory Boards, for instance of the national dementia prevention programme pdp.

Dr. Cat Bohannon

Dr. Cat Bohannon is a researcher, scholar, and author. She received her PhD from Columbia University, where she studied the evolution of narrative and cognition. Her essays and poems have appeared in The Atlantic Monthly, Scientific American, Science Magazine, The Best American Nonrequired Reading, Lapham’s Quarterly, The Georgia Review, and Poets Against the War. Eve: How the female body drove 200 million years of human evolution is her first book and a New York Times bestseller. She lives in the U.S. with her partner and two offspring

Prof. Anastasia Litina

Prof. Anastasia Litina is an Associate Professor at the University of Macedonia in Thessaloniki, Greece. She is also an Extramural Research Fellow at the University of Luxembourg. She received her Ph.D. in Economics at the University of Macedonia, visited Brown University for a semester and worked at the University of Luxembourg as a post-doctoral researcher prior to her employment in Greece. Her research interests include a theoretical and empirical examination of the long-run determinants of growth, on the implications of various dimensions of culture (e.g., corruption, religiosity, environmental attitudes) for socio-economic outcomes, the social implications of population aging, as well as on the long-lasting effect of historical events on current socio-economic outcomes. Her work has been published in the Economic Journal, Journal of Economic Growth, Journal of Development Economics, Harvard Business Review, World Development, Journal of Economic Behavior and Organization, Economics Letters, Journal of Comparative Development and others. She is currently ranked among the top 3% of female economists according to IDEAS and top 4% among male and female economists (based on publications of the last 10 years). She has served as PI in several research projects financed by Greek and Luxembourgish funding schemes as well as from the EU. Her research has also received honors and distinctions from the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki and the University of Macedonia. She has also been active in organizing various conferences and workshops including leading workshops in the field. More details about Anastasia Litina can be found here

Prof Skerdilajda Zanaj

Skerdilajda Zanaj is a Full Professor of Economics at the University of Luxembourg. Her research interests include microeconomics, public and international economics, and the economics of culture and migration. Prior joining the University of Luxembourg, she was a Marie Curie Fellow at the Université Catholique de Louvain.

Since 2019, she is the gender equality officer of the University of Luxembourg. Her work has led the University to reach the milestone of validating a Gender Equality Policy in May 2021. She is a promoter and advocate of gender equality because a gender diverse research team enhances research’s scientific quality and social relevance.

Skerdi is the chairwoman of the ZONTA Jane Klausman Awards for Luxembourg.

Prof. Conchita D’Ambrosio

Conchita D’Ambrosio is Professor of Economics, FNR PEARL Chair on socio-economic inequalities, at Université du Luxembourg. She is an economist, with a Ph.D. from New York University (2000). Her research interests have revolved around the study of individual and social well-being, its determinants, and the proposal of various measures that are able to capture its different aspects. Before joining the University of Luxembourg in 2013, she was Associate Professor of Economics at the Università di Milano-Bicocca.

She is chief editor of the Review of Income and Wealth since 2007. She joined the editorial board of the Journal of Economic Inequality in 2013. She has published in several academic journals and she is the editor of the Handbook of Research on Economic and Social Well-Being published by Edward Elgar in 2018.

Since 2019 she is a member of the Scientific Council of the Institut National de la Statistique et des Etudes Economiques du Grand-Duché de Luxembourg, and of the Fondazione Luigi Einaudi in Turin. She is Research Fellow of the Deutsche Institut für Wirtschaftsforschung (DIW) Berlin since 2015. Since 2013 she is Luxembourg Income Study Senior Scholar and Fellow of the Dondena Centre on Social Dynamics and Public Policy of Università Bocconi in Milan.

Prof. Claus Vögele

Claus Vögele is professor of clinical and health psychology at the University of Luxembourg, where he is Head of the Department of Behavioural and Cognitive Sciences, and director of the Master programme in Psychotherapy. He graduated in Psychology from Landau University, completed his doctorate at the University of Hamburg, and obtained his habilitation at the University of Marburg. Over the last 30 years he has held academic posts at both German and British Universities before joining the University of Luxembourg in February 2010. He is reviewer for numerous research funding organisations, and appointed member of a reviewer college. He is chief-editor of one international and one national journal, and editorial board member of several international and national journals. He is an Associate Fellow of the British Psychological Society (BPS), a Fellow of the Royal Society of Medicine (UK), past Chair of the Division of Health Psychology (German Psychological Society) and past President of the German Society for Behavioural Medicine. A chartered Clinical and Health Psychologist (BPS, Health and Care Professions Council) and registered practice supervisor (BPS) he has been practising for the last 25 years and has held a senior position in the National Health Service (UK).