News & Events

Twelve Female Scientists Set to Speak at Soapbox Science Dublin 2022, supported by the Earth Institute

Published: Monday, 13 June, 2022

After the success of virtual events in 2020 and 2021, Soapbox Science Dublin is back in Dublin City Centre.  On 18 June 2022, twelve (12) female scientists are set to talk about their research in areas of science, technology, engineering, mathematics and medicine (STEMM) at Soapbox Science Dublin 2022. Speakers will address the public from their soapboxes.

Soapbox Science Dublin 2022 is taking place on South King Street, Dublin on Saturday 18th June, 11am – 2pm and visitors can call by any time to hear some fantastic scientists talk about their amazing work!

The event will involve speakers from University College Dublin (UCD), Technological University Dublin, Maynooth University, and Dublin City University.

Soapbox Science Ireland 2022 speakers

Established in 2011 Soapbox Science is a global public outreach platform for promoting women and non-binary scientists and the science they do. This year over 35 Soapbox Science events, including the Dublin event, are planned across 11 countries.

Dr Andrea Johnson, Chairperson at WITS Ireland (Women in Technology & Science), one of the supporters of Soapbox Science Ireland, emphasised WITS Ireland support for the event, “The vision of Women in Technology & Science Ireland (WITS) is to advocate, connect and act for women in STEM. Soapbox Science creates an incredible opportunity to bring science into the public realm. It gives everyone the opportunity to learn about the amazing experiments and discoveries that are made every day. WITS are delighted to sponsor this event helping to spark the imagination of future generations of female scientists in this innovative and creative way!” 

One of the Soapbox Science Dublin 2022 speakers is Eleni Zavrakli, a PhD researcher in Machine Learning and Control Theory at National University of Ireland Maynooth, who will deliver a talk entitled, ‘A journey from Mathematics to 3D printing’.

Speaking in advance of the event, Ms Zavrakli said, “Mathematics has always fascinated me, it is somehow beautifully abstract and incredibly specific at the same time. And while studying maths on a theoretical level is very interesting, its countless applications to real life problems can be even more intriguing. At Soapbox Science Dublin 2022 I will talk about my work using mathematical methods and intelligent algorithms to improve the performance of 3D printers. My algorithms will allow the machines to learn in a similar way to how humans learn, based on past experience, gaining a reward for every good decision.”

Dr Veronica Sofianos, Assistant Professor (Ad Astra Fellow) at UCD School of Chemical and Bioprocess Engineering, is also taking part in our Soapbox Science Ireland event and will deliver a talk entitled ‘Size doesn't always matter. How nanoparticles combat climate change!’.

Dr Sofianos said, “Soapbox Science 2022 is a great opportunity for me to share my journey on how I became an Assistant Professor at UCD in Chemical Engineering. You only need passion and the rest will fall into place. My passion is researching how I can use water to produce clean and cheap fuels to ease our pockets and combat climate change.

Soapbox Science Dublin 2022 is supported by UCD through funding from the UCD Earth Institute, UCD School of Agriculture and Food Science, UCD School of Biology and Environmental Science, and WITS (Women in Science and Technology) Ireland. This year, Soapbox Science Dublin is being organised by a team of scientists from Department of Agriculture Food and Marine, University College Dublin, and the Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland.

Soapbox Science Dublin 2022 joint-organiser, Dr Dara Stanley, UCD School of Agriculture and Food Science, said, “Soapbox Science is a really fun and engaging event, where female scientists bring their research to the streets to share with the general public. It is really important because many people do not know any scientists, so bringing science to the streets helps to break down stereotypes around who a scientist is, what they look like, and what they do in their research.”

The 12 Soapbox Science Dublin 2022 speakers and the titles of their talks are as follows;

  • Assistant Prof. Veronica Sofianos, University College Dublin, ‘Size doesn't always matter. How nanoparticles combat climate change!’
  • Dr Junli Xu, University College Dublin, ‘Plastic in our bodies: should we worry?’
  • Aoife Martin, University College Dublin, ‘Biocatalysis: Helping Chemistry Go Green!’
  • Holly English, University College Dublin, ‘FitBits for Dogs! Tracking animal movement and behaviour with technology’
  • Dr Elizabeth Hunter, Technological University Dublin, ‘How your neighborhood socioeconomic status can impact your health’
  • Burcu Akkoyunlu, University College Dublin, ‘Can we employ microorganisms? An alternative solution for climate change’
  • Dr Sorcha Daly, University College Dublin, ‘Reduce, Reuse and Redefine Waste for a Sustainable Future’
  • Eleni Zavrakli, National University of Ireland Maynooth, ‘A journey from Mathematics to 3D printing’
  • Dr Tara Dirilgen, University College Dublin, ‘Can the life beneath your feet talk to the bees in the sky?’
  • Rhea Sanjiv Chhaya, University College Dublin, ‘Climate crisis and food safety’
  • Assistant Prof. Alessandra Mileo, Dublin City University, ‘How can a computer learn to “see” and “think"’
  • Alison O’Reilly, University College Dublin, ‘Bees behind the scenes’

So come to South King Street anytime between 11am – 2pm to hear some fantastic scientists talk about their amazing work so come along and join us!

Follow Soapbox Science Dublin via Twitter on @SoapboxSciIRL and #SoapboxScienceDublin or on our website at


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Soapbox Science Ireland 2022 poster