Home page for the CYGNA network

The name CYGNA comes from the female version of the Greek word for SWAN (Supporting Women in Academia Network). Established in June 2014, our main objective is to promote interaction among female academics and to provide a forum for learning, support, and networking.

We organize bi-monthly events and celebrated our 50th meeting in 2022. For more details on our meetings see here. A quick overview of past presentations can be found here. We maintain a readings and inspirations section for female academics, a LinkedIn group, and hashtags #cygna_london and #cygnawomen

For a full description of our network see: Celebrating CYGNA: Supporting women in academia. An overview of blogposts of nearly all our meetings is here. If you are interested in being on the mailing list and/or attending our events please contact Anne-Wil Harzing ( Feel free to share this information to anyone who might be interested.

Organizing Committee

CYGNA Lead team (2023-current)

Anne-Wil Harzing
Middlesex Univ.
United Kingdom
Ciara O'Higgins
Deusto Business School

Clarice Santos
Middlesex Univ.
United Kingdom

Christa Sathish
Univ. of Westminster
United Kingdom

Picture: Clarice, Ciara, Christa, and Anne-Wil (Regent's Park, September 2023)

CYGNA UK/Europe team 

Picture: Satkeen, Sylwia and Joanna (Regent's Park, September 2023)

CYGNA North team

CYGNA Asia-Pacific team

  • Shea Fan, RMIT University, Australia
  • Heejin Kim, Tohoku University, Japan [missing in the picture]
  • Ting Liu, Kyoto University, Japan

Founders & first CYGNA lead team, now consulting team (see picture)

  • Ling Eleanor Zhang, ESCP Business School [2014-2023], founding member
  • Argyro Avgoustaki, ESCP Business School [2014-2023], founding member
  • Anne-Wil Harzing, Middlesex University [2014-current], founding member
  • Shasha Zhao, University of Surrey [2017-2023]

Overview of prior and planned meeting topics

The table below provides an overview of topics we have covered in our meetings in the last eight years, with scheduled topics in purple italics. They are loosely structured in a matrix, but in reality many topics have elements of multiple quadrants of the matrix.

What does CYGNA mean to its members? At our 50th meeting we asked members to share a few words about what CYGNA meant to them. The resulting word-cloud is a perfect summary of CYGNA: a friendly, kind, inclusive, and supportive community, providing a safe space / place to exchange ideas, share experiences, provide advice, inspire, and learn. We think that's pretty amazing :-). This succinct, but wonderfully evocative, comment by the equally wonderful Luisa Pinto says it all.

Belonging, learning, camaraderie, friendship and sharing. My academic family: I'm an only child who suddenly has a community of sisters. Thanks!

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