To the assistant professor of Astrophysics at the University of Crete, Vaso Pavlidou, went the 2014 Greek L’Oréal – UNESCO Award for Women in Science. Pavlidou was honored for her scientific work, in a ceremony held in Athens, Greece. The aim of the awards, organized for the ninth year, is to recognize rising stars among women scientists who have carried out exemplary research in Greece in the field of life and physical sciences.
The awards form part of the international partnership between French cosmetics company L’Oréal and UNESCO, and it is part of the “Women in Science” program that was launched in 1998 and provides awards and fellowships to excellent women scientists. Since 2006, more than 20 young women researchers who work in Greek universities or research centers have been honored.
Pavlidou has published over 75 papers in scientific journals and was one of the driving forces behind the international “RoboPol” project. “RoboPol” is a specialized photopolarimeter designed specifically for the 1.3m telescope at the Skinakas Observatory and commissioned in the spring of 2013. It was conceived, designed, and developed by an international collaboration including the University of Crete and the Foundation for Research and Technology Hellas (FORTH) in Greece, the California Institute of Technology in the United States, the Max-Planck Institute for Radioastronomy in Bonn, Germany, the Nicolaus Copernicus University in Poland, and the Inter-University Center for Astronomy and Astrophysics, in Pune, India. “RoboPol” was designed with high observing efficiency and automated operation as prime goals.
Accepting her award, Pavlidou urged young people with a passion for science to visit the University, where they may receive guidance and explore the limits of human knowledge.