Victorian Gas Program helping break gender stereotypes

Scientists Tiffany Bold and Charlotte Iverach with Geological Survey of Victoria Director, Paul McDonald

Life for a woman working in the geoscience sector 40 years ago was, quite literally, like entering a minefield.

Today, however, the minerals and mining industry operates in a very different landscape, empowering scientists like Tiffany Bold and Charlotte Iverach to hold key roles within major local resource projects in Victoria.

Tiffany and Charlotte are part of the Geological Survey of Victoria (GSV) team running the Victorian Gas Program. This three-year study is exploring Victoria’s potential for producing more gas.

Both women say they were inspired to enter the sciences by mentors during their school and university days. It’s a pathway that is actively encouraged by the Victorian Government, which is vocal in its support for women in this formerly non-traditional field and science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) in general.

Now, they want to encourage other women to look beyond the stereotypes and choose a geoscience career, too.

“The challenging and rewarding nature of the field does keep me interested,” Tiffany explains. “It involves constant learning and opportunities to meet a variety of people, gain a broad range of skills and have the chance to spend time in some far-away places,” she says.

Charlotte says she has seen first-hand how scientific work has a real-life impact – a result that is incredibly fulfilling.

“There are tremendous opportunities for women in this space and there is so much support nowadays as well,” she says.

Tiffany and Charlotte attended the recent Melbourne event hosted by the Women in Mining Network, a body which seeks to empower women who work in the energy, minerals, mining and natural resources management sectors.

Learn more about the Victorian Gas Program, read about Victoria’s lead scientist, Dr Amanda Caples, who is currently overseeing the onshore studies component of the project, or check out the launch of Victoria’s Inspiring Australia Program.