Daphnet, United Kingdom



Yasmin Robson graduated in Mathematics in 1977, then went on to a studentship at The Royal Greenwich Observatory at Herstmonceux Castle. She completed her Ph.D. in Radio Astronomy in 1983 at the University of Manchester, Jodrell Bank, observing neutral Hydrogen in nearby galaxies, investigating group dynamics, stability and missing mass. During a career break to raise 3 sons, Yasmin was an Associate Lecturer in ‘Astronomy & Planetary Science’ with the Open University. She returned to research in Astrophysics with a Daphne Jackson Fellowship at the University of Oxford, and then took up a Research Fellowship at the University of Cambridge working on the Design & Development of the ALMA Telescope, an international collaboration. She also participated in a site-testing campaign very high up in the Chilean Andes, in the Atacama Desert, one of the driest places on Earth and where the telescope is being built.

Yasmin has also held positions in industry as an Antenna Research Engineer for GEC Marconi, designing aerials for geostationary satellite communication and later as a Software Engineer in 3D computer graphics for Cambridge Interactive Systems, writing application software for the design of large-scale chemical laboratories.

Yasmin has contributed to policy work for Women in Science and this has led to the removal of age restrictions from academic fellowships. She gave a presentation at the Daphne Jackson Trust 10th Anniversary Conference (2002) on the challenges women face on returning to science following a career break and the problems of short term contracts. She was a member of the working group for the SET Fair Government White Paper (Greenfield report, 2002, UK) on the barriers experienced by women in SET. She has also worked for MentorSET, Daphnet, AWiSE, UKRC and the Daphne Jackson Trust to support other women scientists.

In addition to her work with Daphnet (an email forum for women scientists, for news, jobs and discussion), she is Treasurer of Oxford Association for Women in Science & Engineering and on the organising committee of Oxford International Women’s Festival, including coordinating the annual Dorothy Hodgkin Memorial Lecture.