WISER stands for Women of the International Society for Eye Research. WISER was formed because the executive leadership of the society (ISER) recognized the great need and potential benefits to female early career researchers if they could have personal interactions with senior researchers during attendance of our bi-annual meetings.
ISER’s Biennial Meetings are held on a rotation basis between North America, Europe and Asia Pacific. For this reason, there is ample opportunity for attendees to enjoy some R & R at wonderful tourist locations. Our WISER and Early Career Researchers (ECR) social functions are organized to ensure maximal opportunity to interact during meeting times and in the evenings.
ISER’s Asia-Pacific Vice President, Professor Frank Lovicu organized ISER’s version of speed dating during the welcome reception in Tokyo in 2016, which was appreciated by all YI as it meant they could form networks to enjoy the rest of the meeting, with others with similar research and social interests.
WISER organizes an evening dinner during each ISER Biennial Meeting where senior researchers attend and sit amongst the ECRs and share their experience and advice in all aspects of professional and family life. This dinner is typically attended by 20-30 attendees and feedback from the YIs have been outstanding as the intimate relaxed setting and small group meant that no one was afraid to ask questions or to share their experience.
WISER has had another surprising benefit in that it has also forged new friendship and collaborations amongst senior female and male researchers who attend and support our functions. Some of our best ‘mentor/mentee’, ‘lab collaborations’ and ‘peer to peer professional networks’ are formed during the informal sessions at our meetings, and WISER continues to maximise these opportunities for our ECRs.
The success of WISER during our earlier meetings and the recognition that male early career researchers would also benefit from these special opportunities have led us to welcome male and female attendees to all WISER functions. Having male leadership attend and hear the difficulties faced by females is essential to facilitating equal access to the best training opportunities for all. So please, encourage all your trainees to register to attend WISER and ECR functions planned for the upcoming Biennial meeting as well as during the ISER/Bright Focus co-sponsored meetings in alternate years.
Click HERE to read the history of WISER.