siaa_logo_blue Bärbel S. Koribalski

CSIRO Australia Telescope National Facility

Sydney, Australia

Job Title: Senior Research Scientist


She is an Astronomer: How many years since you got your maximum degree?

Bärbel Koribalski: 15 years.


SIAA: What is the most senior position you have achieved?

BK: Deputy Astrophysics Group Leader


SIAA: What drove you into an astronomy career?

BK: The chance to investigate interesting problems using physics and maths.


SIAA: Do you feel it was more difficult for you to get a job or a promotion in comparison with male astronomers?

BK: Yes: theDirector, Deputy Director and four Assistant Directors are all male; secretaries all female.


SIAA: Are women under-represented in your institution?

BK: Yes. Approximately 30% are women.


SIAA: What is your family status?

BK: Partner, one child (now 10), parents overseas.


SIAA: Have you had any career breaks?

BK: Maternity leave.


SIAA: How difficult did you find the return to work?

BK: It waseasy – I had the full support from the Director at the time.


SIAA: How many hours per day do you normally dedicate to work?

BK: 8 hours.


SIAA: What would most help you advance your career?

BK: Building up a research group to work directly with more postdocs and students.


SIAA: What recommendation would you make to young women starting their career in astronomy?

BK: Go for it !


SIAA: What have been your career highlights so far?

BK: (1) organizing my own international symposium was amazing; (2) observing with telescopes around the world is always a great experience, (3) meeting people from around the world and exchange ideas, start and enhance collaborations, etc.