There are now numerous efforts underway to banish sexism and gender bias in the lab, but this was not always the case – and one should not forget that there is still some way to go before the number of women appointed to senior positions matches that of their male peers. So how much have things changed over the years? Tape recorder in hand, JCS's Editor-in-Chief, Fiona Watt, has tracked down several eminent female scientists and asked them about their experiences. These appear in a new section of JCS, entitled Women in Cell Science. Second in the series is an interview with Anna Starzinski-Powitz, a professor at the Goethe-Universität in Frankfurt (see p. 519).