Diversity in scientific research teams, inclusive recruitment processes, training and communication, and the production of gender-sensitive knowledge ensure higher quality research with more significant impact.
Scientific research is affected by particular social and cultural contexts which shape the ways scientists think and see the world. Gender is an inherent part of these contexts. The way scientific knowledge is produced and translated for society is therefore not alien to the structural system that produces gender inequalities and allocates distinct hierarchical roles and positions. The invisibility of gender or the (re)production of stereotypes in scientific research not only limits the impacts of research (which may be irrelevant to half of the population) but also poses risks and potential harm by making recommendations and contributing to changes that have not been tested inclusively.
The gender dimension is a dynamic concept that presupposes the questioning of gender norms and stereotypes and the consideration of the changing social needs and roles of women and men. Integrating the gender perspective into research and innovation implies taking into account the biological and social characteristics of women and men at all stages of research, from the formulation of research questions to the collection, analysis and dissemination of data and the development of concepts and theories. It also implies ensuring the balanced participation of women and men in scientific work, ensuring a culture and working conditions that promote equality.
Given the urgency of promoting Gender Equality in scientific research, and the strengthening of measures for gender equality in the various funding programmes, such as Horizon Europe, Gender-Equal Research or GendER@UC aims to strengthen the integration of the gender perspective in the research processes and contents of the UC.
The representation of women in science and the changing gender profile of higher education and research institutions have gained increasing prominence on the European Union's agenda, particularly over the last two decades.
In recent years, the European Commission has addressed gender equality in scientific research mainly in two contexts: within the European Research Area (ERA) and through its main funding instrument - Research Framework Programmes. Currently, gender equality is one of the key priorities of New ERA for Research and Innovation. Furthermore, gender equality is presented in Horizon 2020 from a dual approach: (i) as a cross-cutting issue across the programme, and (ii) through the funding of specific initiatives in support of the gender equality strategy (in which SUPERA is included). This framework reinforces the relevance of the commitment and institutional action for gender equality within one of the most relevant pillars of the University of Coimbra: its scientific research.
Note: Issues related to the prevention and elimination of sexual harassment at work at the University of Coimbra are regulated by the “CODE OF GOOD CONDUCT FOR PREVENTING AND COMBATING HARASSMENT AT WORK AT THE UNIVERSITY OF COIMBRA ” [in PT]. As indicated in the Code, any person covered by this Code who considers him or herself the target of harassment at work within the UC, must report the situation to his/her immediate hierarchical superior, or to the superior hierarchical to follow if the harasser is the immediate superior, or directly to the Rector if there is no other direct superior.