Community Research and Development Information Service - CORDIS


GENPORT Report Summary

Project ID: 321485
Funded under: FP7-SIS
Country: Spain

Periodic Report Summary 2 - GENPORT (An internet portal for sharing knowledge and inspiring collaborative action on gender and science)

Project Context and Objectives:
There is an enduring problem with gender and science: women continue to be a minority of scientists, technologists, innovators and researchers globally and in Europe, in all areas but especially in natural sciences and technology; they remain a small minority in the highest research positions and in science decision-making in most European countries. Gender segregation in science is persistent and is changing very slowly. Additionally, attention to and inclusion of the gender dimension in science knowledge-making has only recently been treated as a requirement in research programmes, though many programmes remain uninformed by the ways in which sex and gender underlie many, if not most, scientific and social phenomena and should therefore underpin the research questions, concepts, methods and analysis deployed. Understanding of the ways in which gender influences science priorities, research agendas and methods is still relatively embryonic, and understandings of the gendered processes involved in the valuing and accreditation of knowledge do not yet sufficiently inform science and research practice.
The wealth of gender and science resources already developed in Europe over the last decade offers enormous potential for knowledge sharing and informed action on these fronts, yet these resources are dispersed, and have varying degrees of visibility and usability. Globally, too, major gaps in the dissemination of past and present knowledge persist, while new knowledge is constantly being produced but insufficiently exploited. The GenPORT project was developed in the context of a need identified by the European Commission for the accumulating body of gender and science resources, particularly those resulting from Framework Programme projects, to be offered in accessible, timely, value-added ways to enhance the potential for their exploitation.
The GenPORT project was established to create an internet portal that fulfils this need. Based on extensive consultations with stakeholders in the field, the project was designed to develop an open entry-point to high-quality research, policy reports and practical resources on gender, science, technology and innovation.
The overall objective of the GenPORT project is thus to develop an internet portal which co-ordinates and communicates the results, networking and knowledge of national and European research projects and policy initiatives on gender and science, creating in the process a sustainable community of practice, and promoting worldwide awareness and collaboration in the pursuit of gender equality in science, technology and innovation.
The specific objectives of the project are to:
1. To provide co-ordinated access to the range of high-quality research, policy and practical resources which have been developed through European and most relevant international research on gender, science, technology and innovation, through a dedicated internet portal.
2. To increase the visibility, accessibility and usability of these resources by classifying and organising them according to the reported needs of targeted stakeholders.
3. To promote exchange of experiences and collaboration between communities of practitioners, through a social media layer in the portal and through briefings for policy makers.
4. To make the portal and the community of practice sustainable for current and future users, in organisational, technical and financial terms.

Project Results:
In WP 1 Strategic Analysis for Resource Collection, has developed a Conceptual Framework and a Methodological Framework. The project has also completed an extensive resource coordination and mapping exercise which involved semi-structured interviews with key resource holders across five country clusters. The end-result of resource mapping constitutes the initial set of resources made available on the GenPORT portal.
WP 2 Classification and process for resource coordination involved the conduct of semi-structured interviews with stakeholders in the same country clusters. The purpose of the interviews was to understand the needs of stakeholders, to which the design of the GenPORT portal will respond. At the request of the European Commission, a survey of SiS/SWAFS National Contact Points was included in this WP in order to assess the need for a portal in relation to the gender and science imperatives of Horizon 2020. The User Needs Assessment Report synthesizes our findings from the user interviews and describes implications in terms of the structure and services on the portal. Furthermore, the Gender and Science Taxonomy has been developed and validated with a set of project external experts. The validated taxonomy has been applied to the available resources on GenPORT and serves as basis for collaboration with similar Taxonomy initiatives across Europe.
In WP3 System and Service Integration, a data management plan has been established to specify GenPORT policy on data security, privacy, intellectual property, and online conduct. Furthermore, WP3 included the elaboration of the technical system specification and its subsequent implementation including alpha-, and beta-releases. The Portal Advisory Group has been consulted at three key moments regarding feedback on the technical features of the portal and the foreseen services. After beta-testing the portal, it finally has been launched April 2016.
WP 4 Policy Engagement included the the analysis of the gender and science policy environments in the five country clusters. Two policy environment reports have been published. Furthermore, the Consortium published 5+1 Research Synthesis and the 25 Policy Briefs. This material provides one important pillar for our engagement with the wider gender and science community and specifically policy makers.
WP5 Community Building has developed a strategy for community engagement in order to ensure long-term viability of GenPORT. Within the overall effort, GenPORT has held three Concertation Meetings with the wider gender and science community. A detailed plan of community engagement activities has been elaborated and is currently implemented. Activities carried out include: expert video interviews, online e-discussions, Gender and Science Blog posts, comment requests for Research Synthesis, Social Media Engagement. As part of the offered services on GenPORT, we have implemented a online stakeholder calendar. Targeted collaboration proposals to large scale scientific institutions have been made.
WP 6 Dissemination has established the Dissemination plan with its periodic updates. Additionally, and specifically in WP6, we have identified publicity outlets via an online search and dissemination on national and international events. We are currently contacting portal ambassadors. Our web 2.0 presence has been developed through a Social Media Presence Strategy which underlies our social networking efforts.
Under WP7 Management, we have held four two-day full project meetings, and four Steering Group meetings on the same dates. Three meetings of the Portal Advisory Group and three meetings of the Gender and Science Advisory Group have taken place. Furthermore, we have finalized an Amendment to the Grant Agreement.

Potential Impact:
The final results of the project are expected to be:
* A self-sustaining online community of practice, mediated through an internet portal called GenPORT
* A series of supporting policy documents drawing on research and other resources to assist policy formulation for gender equality in science.
The internet portal and online community of practice is being designed to provide widespread access to high quality resources on gender equality in science, with the aim of informing and stimulating policy and practical action by a wide range of stakeholders. Resources in the following thematic areas are included: Human capital, Practices and processes, Regulation and compliance, Science knowledge making, Teaching and learning. We have targeted stakeholders in the following three broad groups, to maximise the potential for action and advances in gender equality: (1) science stakeholders in the academy, research funders, trade unions, professional associations, opinion formers, lobby organisations, (2) gender equality stakeholders in science organisations, NGOs, gender equality practitioners and advisors, women’s and gender networks, (3) policy makers in science, technology and innovation, in education and training, in gender equality and in employment. Participants in large-scale EU events such as the European Gender Summit have been additionally targeted as stakeholders, which has allowed us to reach stakeholders in the US, Canada, Australia, and other countries beyond the EU. Once the portal is fully open, materials will be uploaded, tagged, linked and commented by community members themselves. This will considerably augment the reach and potential impact of the resources on the portal. The expected immediate impacts of the portal are:
* Increased visibility and usability of gender and science resources
* Improved coordination of these resources
Ultimately, the impact of the portal will be achieved through the vibrancy and active engagement of the online community. Portal resources will be used to advance gender equality in science, technology, innovation and research, supporting actions by, for example, employers, research funders and institutions, professional associations and trade unions, government ministries, agencies and policy makers. Gender equality actions may be concerned with building equality of representation in science and technology (in education, employment, or media representation), with implementing practical, structural change in organisations, or with increased sensitivity to gender issues in the content and conduct of science and research. The longer-term societal implications should include an enhanced use of human potential, creativity and innovation in scientific and technological fields, fewer errors in, e.g., medical research caused by research design based on gendered assumptions rather than evidence, greater social relevance of scientific and technical innovations to the actual rather than the assumed needs of users. The policy briefs to be generated during the project are expected to provide policy makers with contextualised thematic research evidence and policy recommendations to enable them to initiate sustained gender equality-oriented reforms in, for example, science and technology education, employment, career management, research funding, recognition of excellence and innovation support. The address of the portal, which is also that of the project public website, is Contact details of the full consortium are provided on the website.

List of Websites:


Jörg Müller, (Senior Researcher, Gender and ICT Programme)
Tel.: +34934505260
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