The winners in each category will receive $12,500, and the runners-up in each category will receive $5,000.

The ninth annual Underwriters Laboratories–ASEAN–U.S. Science Prize for Women competition is officially opening up for applications, thanks to the ASEAN Committee on Science, Technology, and Innovation (COSTI).

The U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) and UL Research Institutes are working together to support the competition.

Through research on clean energy technologies like renewable energy battery storage, smart grids, electric vehicles, and energy-efficient practices and products, ASEAN women scientists are tackling climate change, and the 2023 competition highlights their work.

Mid-career and senior scientist candidates will compete in the STEM fields (science, technology, engineering, and mathematics).

The winners in each category will receive $12,500, and the runners-up in each category will receive $5,000. UL Research Institutes is a non-profit organisation with a focus on the discovery and application of scientific knowledge.

The results will be revealed in October 2023. The “Electrification” theme for this year will highlight female researchers who have created cutting-edge electrically powered devices or systems.

To reduce carbon dioxide emissions from the building, industrial, and transportation sectors, electrification aims to replace fossil fuel technologies (coal, oil, and natural gas) with clean energy technologies.

In order to decarbonize the economy in the ASEAN region and, ultimately, lessen the effects of climate change globally, it is essential to address emissions from these sectors, which are responsible for the majority of greenhouse gas emissions.

Mohammad Nazri Mohammad Yusof, who is also the chair of the ASEAN COSTI 2023, stated that “the contribution of ASEAN women scientists in the energy sector needs to be more highlighted as their work lies at the heart of our effort to race against the energy crisis and the impact of climate change.”

The Vice President and Executive Director of the Electrochemical Safety Research Institute at UL Research Institutes, Dr. Judy Jeevarajan, stated that the global clean energy transition that we are working towards “requires collaboration among the world’s best minds.” In light of this, “we’re proud to support the work of these scientists as they address today’s critical environmental issues and help lay the groundwork for a safer, more sustainable, and secure world for all of us.”

Innovative research is being done by women across ASEAN to speed up the switch to clean energy. “Without investing in women, we will not be able to address the existential crisis of climate change,” “states Yohannes Abraham, the US ambassador to ASEAN.

“For this reason, the United States proudly collaborates with ASEAN and Underwriters Laboratories to support and capitalise on the work of women in science from all of the ASEAN member states,” the statement reads.

The Science Prize for Women has been an effective and ongoing U.S. initiative supporting ASEAN and its ten member states since 2014. USAID collaborates with ASEAN to advance prosperity and connectivity through economic inclusion, women’s empowerment, and good governance as part of the U.S. strategic approach to the Indo-Pacific region.