A star in her own right

© University of Bath

The University of Bath’s Professor of Extragalactic Astronomy, Carole Mundell is featured in a new book, The Sky Is for Everyone: Stories of Women Astronomers in Their Own Words, a diverse collection of autobiographical essays from leading women in this field.

Throughout her career Prof Mundell has been a strong advocate for opening up astronomy and the field of physics to underrepresented groups, challenging prejudice and outdated attitudes that hinder inclusion.   

She said: ”I’m thrilled to be featured in the book with these eminent and trailblazing women scientists who have broken stereotypes, made major scientific discoveries, driven our international science policy and funding systems and opened the path for future generations.

“The image of astronomy, space science and technology and more broadly physical sciences and engineering remain stereotypically white and male.  This book is important in challenging that stereotype. You can’t be what you can’t see! I hope this book begins the radical change we need to make our role models and pioneers visible and our professions welcoming to all.”

© University of Bath

Prof Mundell is Professor of Extragalactic Astronomy at the University of Bath where she holds the Hiroko Sherwin Chair in Extragalactic Astronomy, and a Fellow of the Institute of Physics. She founded the University’s Astrophysics group and degree programme was Head of the Department of Physics for several years.

She was the Chief International Science Envoy at the Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office from January to October 2021. Previously she served as the first woman Chief Scientific Adviser at the Foreign & Commonwealth Office.

© University of Bath

Her research uses ground- and space-based telescopes looking across the electromagnetic spectrum to catch the fast-fading light from gamma-ray bursts – the most powerful explosions in the Universe – to understand cosmic black holes and their environments.

The book, The Sky Is for Everyone: Stories of Women Astronomers in Their Own Words, is available to purchase online.