Rukhmabai initiatives Stories of women
in stem

Inclusive storytelling about accomplished Indian women in STEM, written by women journalists from India

Stories From Rukhmabai Edition 3

Championing women in STEM through actionable research

By Sreshtha Mondal

The Head of Education Programme at the National Institute of Advanced Studies, Anitha Kurup has done extensive research on education, particularly on women in STEM, to pioneer initiatives and policy changes in that field. 

Foraminifera is her favourite proxy to study oceanographic processes at different timescales

By Kanishka Puri

Dr Rajani Panchang utilises the enormous potential of these single-celled organisms to trap the signatures of past climates in her research to plan and manage ecosystems for the future

At the intersection of social activism, political art and tech

By Aditi Subramanian

A high-end bot with a special focus on vernacular languages and safety of marginalised communities, Aindriya Barua’s ShorrAI can identify and remove online hate speech in Hinglish   

Hunting down the story behind every crime is this forensic scientist’s passion​

By Shikha Sharma

Dr Shaloo Malik has handled nearly 18,000 cases in the last 25 years of her service at the Forensic Science Lab in Jodhpur. “You have to find the story from the specimens.”

This interdisciplinary psychologist explores mind-body problems, studies brain function

By Nishtha Bhargava

Belonging to neither discipline, but relevant everywhere is the crux of cognitive scientist Dr Varsha Singh’s work, where engineers, biologists and psychologists study how a patient’s cognitive abilities are affected by diseases or injuries

Innovative approaches put her air pollution research into top gear

By Shikha Sharma

Dr Gazala Habib never imagined she would be a scientist one day. She recalls entertaining the idea of becoming one while watching the 1969 Bollywood spy thriller Yakeen at her home in Raipur, Chhattisgarh, but the moment was short-lived.   

This accidental entrepreneur bets on microalgae for net-zero transition

By Gowthami Subramaniam

From a researcher to an entrepreneur, Dr Jikku Jose has many achievements to her credit. Born and brought up at Kanjirappally in Kottayam district of Kerala, her eco-conscious father fostered her interest in science.

Trailblazer at the forefront of India’s battle against COVID-19

By Sneha Khedkar

Dr Minal Dakhave Bhosale’s passion for public health burned bright from an early age. This led her to become the driving force behind the development of a groundbreaking COVID-19 testing kit at a young age of 33. 

From emulsified fuel to protein bars, her innovations ride high on sustainability

By Shailaja Tiwale

Dr Jyotsna Waghmare’s fuel promises to reduce carbon dioxide and particulate matter emissions from vehicles, whereas the protein bars from oil cakes and artificial production of Medium-Chain Triglycerides help boost nutrition levels

Exploring the depths: The adventures of a marine biologist

By Sanjana Chevalam and Pragya Solanki

Driven by an endless curiosity and a sense of adventure, Prerana Gawde juggles many roles — marine biologist, professional diver and one of the few female underwater researchers in India

Spotlight on inclusive research as women left out of drug research, clinical trials​

By Sneha Khedkar

Prescribing medicines without conducting experiments on female animals is causing more harm than good to women, resulting in administration of wrong medicines to them

Sustainability and rural empowerment drive this geneticist, her father's daughter

By Shailaja Tiwale

Dr Chanda Nimbkar’s contributions to animal breeding, notably in enhancing the genetic features of local sheep and goats, have greatly improved the livelihoods of people from rainfed areas of rural Maharashtra

How this millennial doctor demystifies sexual, reproductive health education through Instagram

By Sneha Khedkar

With over one million people following her Instagram handle @dr_cuterus, Dr Tanaya Narendra has been making best use of the online space to educate people on all aspects of reproductive biology

Fighting in the dark: How ASHAs in Bihar strive to keep kala-azar at bay

By Saumya Kalia

Overworked and underpaid, grassroots health workers continue to go door to door, persist in screening of people with symptoms, and constantly monitor them for years together in their bid to eliminate the disease

She reposed trust in plants to tide over tough days in foreign lab ​

By Gowthami Subramaniam

Battling bias and returning home without a published research made Jaishree Subrahmaniam so resilient that she managed to beat 12,000 applicants to emerge as the recipient of prestigious Marie Curie Fellowship

Rukhmabai grants 2023 We're thrilled to
announce the new Grantees!

Our newest cohort has been carefully selected from the dozens of submissions we received from incredible science writers and journalists eager to contribute towards building inclusive spaces in Indian STEM.

Sneha Khedkar

Sneha is a biologist-turned-freelance science journalist with a passion for writing about how science intersects with society. She has an MSc in Biochemistry and four years of research experience. She believes her experience as a woman in STEM will help her tell compelling stories emphasising the challenges and opportunities faced by women in these fields.

Kanishka Puri

Kanishka is a writer, photographer and up-and-coming documentary filmmaker. Her photo story titled ‘Reclamation by the Sea’, about the first women lifeguards of Goa, was awarded the Honourable Mention in MMEG’s second annual photo competition in 2022. She is committed to shaping narratives of intersectionality focused on gender.

Shikha Sharma

Shikha is an independent journalist and photographer based out of New Delhi. She reports on women’s issues, climate change and development. Last year, an article she wrote about the invisibility of migrant women in India, as part of a development journalism fellowship, won the Laadli Media Award for gender-sensitive reporting. She is passionate about storytelling and hopes to highlight stories of underrepresented communities through her work.

Rukhmabai Grants | STORIES OF WOMEN IN STEM Applications are now closed

Help us amplify the voices of striking women who have unique points of view and compelling insights into the world of STEM and their place in it

In conversation with rukhmabai fellows '22

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Read The Stories From Rukhmabai Edition 2

Read The Stories From Rukhmabai Edition 1