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NEW PATHWAYS TO GENDER AND EQUALITY IN RESEARCH AND INNOVATION IN THE EUROPEAN UNION

Periodic Reporting for period 1 - NEWPATHWAYS (NEW PATHWAYS TO GENDER AND EQUALITY IN RESEARCH AND INNOVATION IN THE EUROPEAN UNION)

Reporting period: 2019-06-01 to 2020-05-31

Equality leads to enhanced excellence in science, research and innovation. We need all genders and minorities on board to make sure we can tackle the grand challenges of our time. Europe needs to be inclusive to be competitive.

The Research and Innovation Excellence through gender equality: New pathways and challenges conference in Helsinki in October 2019 brings together Europe’s top speakers and thinkers working towards that goal.

The objective of the event was to influence the future of gender equality by hosting discussions to shape the actions and policies of tomorrow.

The consensus on gender equality as a priority in the European Union has been under duress during the past few years, which highlights the need for a renewed and reinvigorated discussion on the future directions for the gender equality effort in research and innovation.

We need a better roadmap for institutional change to achieve gender equality throughout the system: from early education to the very top positions in R&I.

The first EC Communication on Women in Science was adopted in 1999. The same year saw the founding of the Helsinki Group on Gender in Research and Innovation. Now, 20 years later, we turn to Helsinki again. Now is the time to take stock of the developments, improvements and lessons learned in the advancement of gender equality in research and innovation (R&I). It is also time to take action on the future of gender equality in R&I.
The event was planned and executed together with experts on gender equality in R&I from various countries. The actual event hosted a number of important and interesting discussions on many topical themes in gender equality and RDI activities. The outcome was the Helsinki call for action, which included a number of recommendations to EU, member states, research performing and funding organizations and the business sector on how to advance equality.
The key take away messages of the conference would be that there is a continued need to work on gender equality and diversity in RDI on all levels of government and the research community. Unfortunately, the private sector involvement both in the conference and in the impact was nowhere near as strong as that of the research community and higher education. This is unfortunate, since the challenges are even steeper in the private sector.