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Home Publication GENDER-NET analysis report: award schemes, gender equality and structural change

GENDER-NET analysis report: award schemes, gender equality and structural change

Published: 19/11/2015

The report shares the results of research undertaken to understand the impact of eight award schemes aimed at advancing gender equality, including the Athena SWAN Charter, and their ability to stimulate gender equality and enact structural change in research institutions.

ECU-Gendernet-full-report-Oct-2015The research, which comprised interviews with key people involved in award applications at institutions and award scheme programme sponsors and managers, looked at gender equality award schemes in the research sector in Europe, as well as some international schemes. The report explores whether it would be desirable, and how it might be possible, to create a transnational gender equality award to achieve gender equality in research careers.

The report shows that the evidence is in favour of the development of a transnational award scheme, and recommends that a joint transnational award or incentive on gender equality be developed jointly by representatives from across Europe, with regard to: conditionality of EU-level funding to holding the transnational award; a focus on gender and specificity to research and higher education; appropriate resourcing for sustainability; and consideration of extending existing successful award schemes (eg ECU’s Athena SWAN Charter) Europe-wide to maximise impact.

The research was undertaken as part of the GENDER-NET project. ECU is a partner on this project, a European Research Area Network (ERA-NET) funded by the European Commission under the Science in Society work programme of the seventh Framework Programme (FP7). GENDER-NET is designed to address the common challenges still facing European research institutions in achieving gender equality in research and innovation.

Based on these recommendations, work will be done in the GENDER-NET project in 2015-2016 to develop a possible framework for a transnational award. This will also include consideration of whether the award scheme should include the integration of gender analysis in research contents and programmes, based on other work carried out in the GENDER-NET project.

For more information about GENDER-NET please visit