NSERC Chair for
Women in Science & Engineering

Dr. Elena Konstantinovskaya

Be problem-solving focused, not process-focused; feel equal with others.

Associate Director, Integrated Petroleum Geosciences
University of Alberta

Teaching advanced industry or post-graduate courses in the Integrated Petroleum Geosciences (IPG) program, supervising IPG capstone projects and developing a research program in geomechanics, structural geology of sedimentary basins applied to problems in petroleum systems, interpretation of reflection seismic data from sedimentary basins, help facilitate and oversee IPG projects with industry partners.

As an academic, what is your favourite part of your job?

Research and consulting.

What are you researching and what excites you about it?

Structural geology, seismic interpretation, fault analysis, analog modeling, and rock mechanics

What types of professions can students graduating in your field enter?

Geologist, petroleum geoscientist, geophysicist.

Is your workplace male-dominated? If so, how do you negotiate being a woman in a male-dominated workplace and/or field?

I just try to work to be happy with my realizations, good results are always recognizable, not depending on whether you are woman or man .

How do you foster and encourage diversity in your workplace?

We have a good balance in diversity among our students, our program being international.

What kinds of systemic support could institutions provide to help encourage girls and women to pursue careers in science and engineering?

Let them know more about these fields, better earlier in their learning career, how exciting it is; Girls and women are as bright as boys and men, they do not necessarily need any additional encouragement if they are interested; The only thing that is important is to help and provide support for daycare to help with motherhood and work-life balance.

What advice would you give to girls or young women who are interested in careers in science or engineering?

Be problem-solving focused, not process-focused; feel equal with others, they will have to feel the same way; be open-minded, honest and respectful; do not let yourself think about male-dominated environment to become obsessive, it is bothering and rarely justified.

As a professional in science or engineering, who are your role models and mentors?

Do not have really role models, mentors happened to be men; admired courage of Marie Colvin.