This collection of articles was born out of a letter that I wrote to Nature1, documenting the highly unrepresentative gender distribution in the receipt of scientific prizes and named lectures, taking the Biochemical Society as a example. A subsequent meeting with representatives of the Biochemical Society led to the idea of devoting an issue of The Biochemist to a collection of articles on the barriers facing women and minorities in bioscience careers, and the ways in which these hurdles can be overcome. The Editor, Mark Burgess, has done a wonderful job in commissioning a series of essays that portray how far we have come, describe the state we are in today, and indicate the ways in which the problems facing women can be tackled.

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