A call for binding measures : Interview

The Women in Science – Norway website recently published an interview with Luisa Prista and Marina Marchetti, from the Scientific Culture and Gender Issues unit of the European Commission:

“The trend is the same all over Europe: Women comprise a majority of the students and about half of the doctoral research fellows in most of the countries. But although the percentage of women in European research has been high for a long time, only a few of them reach the very top – even today.

“There has been a significant change in the gender equality work with the new Framework Programme for Research,” explains Luisa Prista, head of the Scientific Culture and Gender Issues unit, which is responsible for gender equality and the integration of gender issues in science at the European Commission’s Directorate-General for Research.

She and her colleagues are responsible implementing the action lines on women in science for the Seventh Framework Programme as well as for drawing up policy proposals in this area.

“Our previous strategy was to implement measures that were designed to ‘fix’ the women. The aim was to develop tools that would encourage women to choose, stay and progress in scientific careers. We focused on building networks for women, establishing mentor programmes and promoting role models,” she says.

“But then we realized that the problem lies rather in the institutions and the research system. Therefore, we switched to a strategy that would ‘fix’ the administrations instead. Our goal now is to encourage structural changes at the research institutions.”

To read the full interview, please click here

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