Women Leading the Way in Robotics and Automation

One woman set up the Australian Centre for Robotic Vision—the world’s first such center—and then led efforts to create Australia’s first Robotics Roadmap. One co-founded a robot vacuum cleaner company and changed housework forever.
Mar 10, 2021

Smart Manufacturing profiled 20 women who are helping to create a better world. On behalf of humanity, the magazine thanks them for their hard work, sharp minds, and true grit. If there is a common thread found among these women making their mark on robotics and automation, it is a heightened awareness of the impact humans have on the planet as well as the positive impact we can achieve with concerted efforts.


By Ilene Wolff

Contributing Editor, SME Media

One woman set up the Australian Centre for Robotic Vision—the world’s first such center—and then led efforts to create Australia’s first Robotics Roadmap. One co-founded a robot vacuum cleaner company and changed housework forever. Another, in Stockholm, is working with the United Nations in disease and natural disaster response. Yet another is helping close the skills gap in manufacturing. If there is a common thread found in the women Smart Manufacturing identified as making their mark in robotics and automation, it is a heightened awareness of the impact humans have on the planet without trying, as well as the positive impact we can have with concerted efforts. They see robots and drones as Jills of all trades that serve as helpful companions in education, health care and aging, as “eyes” that open new worlds in ocean depths, as “positive-impact devices” and as what (when paired with other automation technology) can enable indoor farming and “sustain the things we care about.” The 20 women profiled here are helping create a better world. On behalf of humanity, the magazine thanks them for their hard work, sharp minds and true grit. Because community building is so important, we are thrilled to see that Amy Elliott, Gillan Hawkes, Elena Messina, Roberta Nelson Shea and Nicole Renee Williams are members of SME.

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