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Gender Equality Network in the European Research Area

Periodic Reporting for period 2 - GENERA (Gender Equality Network in the European Research Area)

Reporting period: 2016-12-01 to 2018-08-31

Gender equality and gender mainstreaming in research has been identified by the European Commission as one of the priorities for the European Research Area “to end the waste of talent which we cannot afford and to diversify views and approaches in research and foster excellence”. With the main goal to address gender equality in R&I the GENERA consortium has been formed to apply a bottom-up approach to enhance gender equality in the field of physics research as a benchmark for other sciences.

Following a “from physics for physics” approach GENERA supported research organisations in implementing gender equality plans and performed the following coordination and support actions:
1. Assess the status of gender issues in the partner organisations.
2. Identify gaps in existing Gender Equality Plans (GEPs) and determine specific needs or actions to enhance gender equality and women careers in physics.
3. Monitor and evaluate the existing activities of the involved organisations (partners and associates).
4. Formulate customized GEPs for all implementing s and create a roadmap for their implementation in physics with the potential of application in other research fields.
5. Support involved organisations in implementing customized GEPs.
6. Create a network of RPOs, HEIs and RFOs to promote gender equality in physics.
7. Set up a long-term monitoring system allowing RPOs and RFOs monitoring the impact of their GEPs in physics with the potential of application in other research fields.
The consortium determined the present status of activities in participating countries oriented to promoting gender equality, and gender equality plans (GEP) in particular. The results of a comprehensive literature review, the analysis of available data on partner institutions as well as a widely-scoped cross-sectional selection of GEP implemented across countries and institutions have been described in a field report.

Based on a concept prepared in the project the GENERA consortium organised 10 Gender in Physics Days in all participating countries. More than 1000 physicists and staff members became engaged in discussions about gender issues.

A common framework for collecting gender relevant data has been prepared and a standard GENERA data set has been defined. This data set forms the basis of the long-term monitoring to be performed as part of the GENERA Network.

Interview guidelines for institutional landscape interviews have been prepared. Members of the GENERA consortium conducted 83 interviews, which were analysed to identify the gender balance conditions in physics.

The accompanying evaluation and monitoring of the implementation activities of GENERA has been commenced. The ex-ante and ex-post assessments of the GEP implementation have been performed by carrying out interviews with relevant target groups in the organisations. An overall frame and tool to monitor GEP progress was developed allowing organisations to choose measures and targets best fitting for their implementation work. The Planning – Action – Monitoring tool allows users to find measures, indicators and targets for GEPs.

A toolbox for tailored GEPs was created by collecting more than 100 measures. The toolbox is structured in 6 fields of action and 8 different target groups. The toolbox describes in detail the implementation objectives of each measure, as well as the difficulty of the implementation, which is classified as “easy”, “advanced”, “well advanced”.

A roadmap has been prepared to describe the GEP implementation. Implementation managers, who were in charge of creating and implementing GEPs, met several times to review the progress, exchange on existing challenges, and get advice from experts.

During the project GENERA consortium was extended to 13 beneficiaries, 3 associates and 18 observers from all over Europe.
Two dedicated network events have been organized to present the results of the GENERA project to stakeholder organizations interested in participating in the GENERA Network and obtain feedback. A Memorandum of Understanding has been prepared for the setting up of the GENERA Network. At the GENERA final event on August 31, 2018 the GENERA Network was officially established.

The project was supported by dissemination and valorisation activities. Two stakeholder workshops have been held to (I) present and discuss GENERA results with practitioners and managers involved in similar Gender Equality promoting projects and (II) to gain input for and discuss GENERA products and experience with science and policy communities to help produce policy briefs. As a result three policy briefs have been developed.

The project website was prepared and continuously updated to serve as the resource to publicise the GENERA goals, work and news as well as link to all partners involved in GENERA. All partners provided input for the GENERA website, the newsletter, and the social media channels.
CGENERA was able to complete all tasks defined in the DoW.

The project consortium has been enlarged by major players in physics research in Europe to address gender equality in a cooperative way and strengthen the gender dimension on the institutional level as well as in national and European research programmes dedicated to physics research and beyond.

Beyond the actual implementation of GEPs in the participating organisations GENERA created a toolbox with gender equality measures, a roadmap for implementation and a Planning – Action – Monitoring (PAM) tool that can be used by other organisations in physics or neighbouring fields of science to implement GEPs as well.

The successful series of Gender in Physics Days organised by the partners of GENERA demonstrated the potential of the concept and format of these events to reach out to many stakeholders. GENERA Network can continue with organizing such events.

The consortium was able to prepare a Memorandum of Understanding describing a light-weight structure and a plan for a long-term monitoring to establish GENERA Network, which was launched at the final event of the GENERA project.