I-Lab 2021: where are the women?

I-Lab [1] is a competition for start-ups, rewarding the most promising innovations. Initiated in 1999 by the Ministry of Research within the legal framework of innovation and research, this national competition for the creation of innovative technology companies has been, since then, renewed yearly with a double objective:

1. To detect and push forward the creation of companies relying on innovative technologies;

2. To promote the transfer of research results to the socio-economic world.

The proportion of women was constantly increasing, reaching 20% of female awardees in 2020. But in the 2021 edition, this figure has drastically dropped, with women representing only 13% of the 2021 I-Lab laureates.

Album Cover Where are the women ? Patrick Juvet. Extract from Paris by Night, 1977.
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How the experience of evaluating European projects has helped the Time for the Planet initiative…

Marjory WACHTEL is Director of Development at BENKEI. She is also a member of the scientific committee of Time for the Planet.

In 2019, when I heard about Time for the Planet (www.time-planet.com), I chose to follow the founders and appreciated their original communication of young successful entrepreneurs. I took the plunge and contacted one of the founders to learn more about this initiative, which aims to save the planet through entrepreneurship.

I realized that my past experience as an expert evaluator for the European Commission (EC) on various R&I support programs could be useful and I offered my help.

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