Serhiy Tokarev about Bridging the Gender Gap in Science and Technology

The issue of gender equality in science and technology remains relevant, despite the efforts being made. Women still make up only a third of the workforce in these fields.

Serhiy Tokarev, IT entrepreneur and co-founder of Roosh, in his Facebook post dedicated to the International Day of Women and Girls in Science, emphasized the need for constant discussion and recognition of women’s professional achievements to overcome existing prejudices.

Serhiy Tokarev notes that Roosh strives for gender equality, as this brings benefits from any point of view. An equal balance of men and women in teams leads to innovative and unique solutions. However, gender imbalance remains a global problem, especially in the IT sector.

One example of a successful idea is the STEM is FEM project, which popularizes science among Ukrainian girls. This educational project focuses on non-formal education, motivating youth to choose STEM majors and introducing them to women researchers. The project organizes various activities, including educational modules, courses, and webinars, where experts teach girls soft skills that complement academic knowledge. An important goal of the project is to create a community of like-minded people who support and inspire each other.

One of the well-known members of the STEM is FEM community is Yulia Tkachenko. In high school, she became interested in drones and proposed improving their performance in adverse weather conditions by adding a laser sight. In 11th grade, Yulia developed a radar station for the Ukrainian military together with a professor from the National Aviation University. Now she is studying at the Kiyv-Mohyla Academy at the Faculty of Economic Sciences and is developing an IT startup in the healthcare sector.

Another example is Nadezhda Kasyanchuk, who is studying in her final year of a master’s degree at Adam Mickiewicz University in Poland. She works in medical biotechnology and works with genomic data to study microbiome changes in patients with Parkinson’s disease. Nadezhda has co-authored 11 articles published in Scopus-indexed journals and received four awards at international conferences in 2023. In addition, she teaches the course “Human Genetics and Society” at the Kyiv School of Economics.

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According to Serhiy Tokarev, projects like STEM is FEM play an important role in achieving gender equality in science and technology. They contribute not only to educational initiatives but also to the formation of communities of women who make an impact in these areas. The development of such projects leads to a more equitable society and strengthens the economy. According to the McKinsey & Company Global Institute, closing the gender gap can increase a country’s GDP.

STEM is FEM is an educational initiative aimed at encouraging girls to pursue studies and careers in STEM fields—science, technology, engineering, and mathematics. This project unites individuals with similar interests, fostering a supportive community where girls can collaborate and grow together. Launched by Serhiy Tokarev, the project received significant recognition in 2023 when the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Ukraine honored it with the title of “Honorary Ambassador of Ukraine in the field of scientific and educational diplomacy.

Thus, promoting gender equality in science and technology remains an important task that requires continued attention and support. Initiatives like STEM is FEM play a key role in bridging the gender gap and driving innovation, leading to a more equal and prosperous society.


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