Women in Science Profiles

Dr. Mojca Ciglaric

My research work belongs to the fields of distributed systems, computer communication and protocols as well as to the wider field of computer safety. The research projects in which I have participated cover different topics. Let me enumerate just some of them. I have carried out research on the new architectures of distributed systems and on different ways of using novel architectures which are not yet completely known, such as grid systems. New architecture models include also the so called P2P or peer-to-peer systems. The focus of my work was on distributed search, i.e. on the efficiency of different rules for mutual exchange of queries as well as on the efficiency of different search protocols in general. I have also dealt with the implementation issues of otherwise already widely accepted security mechanisms into the grid systems and the use of smart cards for the storage of digitally signed documents. Furthermore, I have researched military messaging systems and different aspects of the issues raised by the implementation of security standards and policies. In the field of communication and protocols I have participated in projects dealing with data mining, medicine and soft computing.

Since I am employed at a university, I cannot really say that my work is purely scientific – research and teaching complement each other and that is why I am also interested in different teaching methods. As a young researcher I got the opportunity to work as a teaching assistant. The decision for postgraduate study and finally a PhD followed as a logical result or – as one could say – the natural progress of events. My view of science is completely unemotional: for me this is an occupation like any other. It demands a lot of work, effort, studying, further education and also a lot of sacrifice. However, if one wants to be successful, this is nowadays inevitable in practically every field of work.

As a woman in a predominantly male environment I perceive some irregularities, for example a patronizing or depreciatory attitude towards women, but according to my experience it usually disappears as we get to know each other better. More important is a general attitude towards families. It should definitely be more considerate of families – longer study visits abroad, for example, are encouraged and expected, however a mother (or father for that matter) is not given the opportunity to go abroad together with her children or partner. It would be much easier if childcare services and proper education (schools) were provided for, and partners would be aided in finding a temporary job.

I believe Slovenian scientists are hardworking and ambitious, but sometimes still a little bit narrow-minded and unconnected as we keep forgetting that co-operation and synergy could bring us further. However, through the years things are slowly changing. For the better.

Women in Science Profiles