On International Women's Day, National Grid's UK executive director Nicola Shaw looks at what the STEM industry can do to address its gender imbalance.

Today is International Women’s Day, focusing on the theme of bettering the balance.

The STEM industry’s gender imbalance continues to remain a tricky issue to tackle, despite targeted programmes to recruit more women. One of the key issues driving this imbalance is perception amongst young girls that STEM is not a industry suitable for women to work in.

National Grid’s executive director of the UK, Nicola Shaw, sat down to talk with Serena Peyronnin an 11-year-old pupil from Gravney Secondary School to gain some insight on why this perception exists and what the industry can do to tackle it.

Shaw said: “It is so important that we encourage female interest in STEM from a young age as this is one of the barriers to reducing the industry’s gender imbalance. It was a pleasure to meet Serena and to hear from her about her ideas for how we can improve gender diversity in STEM.

“She asked some great questions about my experience as a woman in engineering, which gave me a chance to reflect on how much diversity has improved since I started my career. We have made great strides but there is still more to do and at National Grid I am proud to say we make it a priority.”

What to read next