siaa_logo_blue Shuhua Ye shuhua

Shanghai, China
Job Title: Research Professor in Astronomy


'She is an Astronomer': What field of astronomy do you work in?

Shuhua Ye: I work in Astrometry and Radio Astronomy.

SIAA: How long is it since you got your maximum academic degree?

SY: 59 years, since 1949.

SIAA: What senior positions have you achieved?

SY: I am a Member of the Chinese Academy of Sciences, elected in 1980. I was Director of the Shanghai Astronomical Observatory, CAS, from 1981 to 1993 and Vice-President of the IAU from1988 to 1994. I have been Honorary President of the Chinese Astronomical Society since 1988. I was also President of the Shanghai Association of Science and Technology from 1996 to 2001and Vice president of the Chinese Association of Science and Technology from1991 to 2001.

SIAA: Do you feel it was more difficult for you to get a job or promotion in comparison with male astronomers?

SY: Almost no difference between male and female.

SIAA: Are women under-represented in your institution?

SY: Yes, very few women have got senior positions (only about 10%); for junior position, there are 30%.

SIAA: What is your family status?

SY: My husband and son are professors in other universities.

SIAA: Have you had career breaks?

SY: No.

SIAA: How many hours per day do you normally dedicate to work?

SY: 8 hours.

SIAA: What recommendations would you make to young women starting their career in astronomy?

SY: In China, the ratio of female to male students in universities is 40% and the ratio of females in graduate schools is 25-30%. As astronomy is becoming more popular than before, I do believe we will have more women astronomers in the younger generation. Yes, they have to work harder, and they have more burdens in family responsibility, and less chance for promotion in work at present, but the situation is improving. We are very happy to have, right now, a female astronomer as the president of the IAU and more women taking place as national leaders too.