“Don’t be afraid of hard work. Nothing worthwhile comes easily. Don’t let others discourage you or tell you that you can’t do it. In my day I was told women didn’t go into chemistry. I saw no reason why we couldn’t.” Gertrude B. Elion, Nobel Laureate 1988.
In my opinion, there are two main reasons for the low numbers of female scientists in academia. The first one is linked to inspiring girls and female students to consider science as a career path. The second one is a problem in retaining women in academia after they have obtained their PhD.