Woman in Innovation: Sanjana Alex
"If you have an idea don’t be afraid to run with it. There is no harm in giving things a go and asking for help."

Each Wednesday we interview women in our community about innovation and what drives them to make a difference in their industries everyday!

What are you working on?

I aim to bring science and fashion together by using creative symbols on a garment to explain scientific research and concepts. Science and art are often depicted as being worlds apart, however it is forgotten that they are both a manifestation of philosophy, with the purpose of rationalising human observations.

My most recent work visually represents a crystallography research project by Eleanor Campbell, a PhD student at the ANU Research School of Chemistry. My garment explains the process of how she found the structure of an enzyme called phosphotriesterase, from DNA replication to the purification and computation of the enzyme’s molecular structure. By communicating science in this unusual way, I want to create a conversation about new research projects in science.

Why is innovation important to you?

It’s an exciting area at the forefront of change. To have the ability to combine creative and critical thinking can have a huge impact on people’s quality of life. Whether it be as simple as a ball point pen or as complex as solar systems to power devices, innovation is capable of advancing productivity in so many ways.

What drives you to make a difference?

From studying both science and design simultaneously, I have come to see that there is a great amount of overlap in the content, however the teaching and learning styles are fundamentally different. I want to demonstrate how science can be communicated visually to appeal to a different audience.

Do you have any advice for getting more women into the innovation ecosystem?

If you have an idea don’t be afraid to run with it. There is no harm in giving things a go and asking for help. All the little steps you make along the way like sharing ideas and going to events may seem insignificant, but it soon turns into a snowball effect.

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