Patricia Caballero

Director of Technologies and R+D+ I

Amurrio Ferrocarril y Equipos, S.A. Tecnalia Research and Development /SPAIN

Patricia Caballero


The job

I was 25 years old; I have been working in relation to the iron and steel industry for 33 years, starting with energy calculations, going from internship to R&D, Production Management, Engineering and Industrial Management (the first woman in foundry), Technology Management and going back to R + d + i.

I had no supports, more than those of my family, who have always supported me in everything undertaken. In the career, which was then 6 years to be an industrial engineer, the teachers asked you if you had an engineer boyfriend, or if you had contemplated working. And during my specialty, first mechanic, we were three girls, then metallurgist was the only girl. Later to start working, those who interviewed told me such bland things as, that I had no strength, that the workers did not accept a woman and that there were no bathrooms…. Both in interviews in the Basque Country and in France. For this reason, I had to start working as a teacher, in energy calculations and marketing, but always with the aim of working in the plant. So, I was interviewed along with 100 candidates for a position in Indonesia, and after being selected. On my return I was recognized for working from different directions on plants here. Since then I have always been called to work in different companies that I have been selecting based on their technology and learning for my professional development and I have had no problems being recognized on the management and administration boards. But if I still have the occasional problem due to my condition of being a woman with a colleague.


PhD in Industrial Metallurgical Engineering and PhD in Materials from the U.P.V. Industrial Engineer from the Higher School of Industrial Engineers of Bilbao in the specialty of Metallurgy (UPV). MBA from the University of Deusto and PMP.

Skill and competences

It is clear that to the specific hard skills are knowledge and experience, but it is necessary to add the skills of great dose of creativity, a lot of emotional intelligence, empathy and teamwork, along with the ability to manage.

Technologies 4.0 is a succession of improvements and evolutionary changes in every industry, it is nothing but evolution, and technology and that implies every manufacturing process including iron and steel; and as a primary sector even more if possible.


I am motivated by how wonderful metallurgy is, its power to transform a part idea, a design, a plan, into a piece that works, that wears out and that can be improved for an engineer, it gathers all the transformation of a precise technology in product.

All work, with or without responsibility, requires a commitment to professionalism, and the sacrifices go with the level of responsibility acquired.
I did not become a mother until I left the commitment of the industrial management, and I went to research that makes a bet on the coherent family more compatible. If you have a position of great responsibility of Direction you must be consistent with it, and if you bet on the family the same but both responsibilities cannot be combined.

The benefits are your personal recognition of doing things to the best of your ability and improving yourself. Believe in yourself and improve yourself, getting up every time you fall and overcoming problems as a team and with empathy.

The challenges are the same in an environment of men or women, the tools with which to fight are those that you have to adapt, even sometimes the language, to be accepted and understood; but without losing your professionalism.

Because it is exciting, because it is not a man's world, because we can transform it to technological, rational and ecological, which is what this world really is. Because it is a world the fusion of logic and dedication.