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Gender Equality in Engineering through Communication and Commitment

Periodic Reporting for period 3 - GEECCO (Gender Equality in Engineering through Communication and Commitment)

Reporting period: 2019-11-01 to 2021-04-30

Scientific and technological innovations are increasingly important in our knowledge-based economies. Today STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics) is literally everywhere; it shapes our everyday experiences. With technologies we choose e.g. structures that influence over a very long time how people are going to work, communicate, travel, consume, and so forth. It is thus both a question of competitiveness and justice, to achieve gender equity within science and technology institutions, including policy and decision-making bodies.
GEECCO aims to establish tailor-made Gender Equality Plans (GEPs) in 4 European RPOs and to implement the gender dimension in 2 RFOs (funding schemes, programmes and review processes). All participating RPOs are located in the STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics) field, where gender equality is still a serious problem and whose innovations are increasingly important in the knowledge-based economies.
GEECCO pursues the following objectives in order to enhance systemic institutional change towards gender equality in the STEM-field: (i) Setting up change framework and a tailor-made GEP for each participating RPO; (ii) Implementing gender criteria in the activities of RFOs; (iii) Setting up a self-reflective learning environment in and between all RPOs und RFOs to participate from existing experiences and match them with their specific needs and circumstances. (iv) Evaluate GEP implementation within the participating RPOs and RFOs with a quantitative evaluation using monitoring indicators and a qualitative monitoring to enhance and fine-tune implemented actions over the course of the project.
Within the first reporting period, all work packages have started, two of them are already finished.
Within WP2 the project management structure has been set up, three project meetings (in Vienna, Barcelona and Krakow) took place. All official requirements have been fulfilled. WP3 had a duration of 7 months and was finished within that time frame. As a result, tailor-made GEPs for each of the 4 implementing RPOs were developed. These GEPs serve as a basis for the upcoming WPs. WP4, WP5, WP6 have all started on time and the first results – baseline documentations – were produced (see the resp. deliverables). WP7 deals with the RFO-perspective, preliminary work was conducted, and the first RFO-observer group meeting took place. Within WP8 all trainings were developed, some of them have already taken place. Furthermore, a help desk consisting of skype, face-to-face consultancy as well as remote supporting documents was implemented, which is continuously adapted to the partners’ needs. Within WP9 dissemination activities on both, national as well as European level, have been carried out. WP10 developed monitoring templates and the evaluation concept was developed.

Within the second reporting period, the work on all WPs has been continued.
Under WP4, WP 5 and WP 6 all RPOs have started actions at a different degree of achievement, depending on the context, the starting point and some changes occurred in the previous months (e.g. new elections and renewal of decision-making bodies at UNIRC and UPC; new legal framework at PK). All 4 RPOs have further worked on their Gender Equality Plans (GEP).
Within WP7 a RFO-network (including 2 partners and 5 observer group members) has been set up and several workshops and exchange formats to share knowledge and tools for enhancing the gender dimension in RFOs’ programmes and services have been carried out so far.
Within WP9 dissemination activities on both, national as well as European level, have been further carried out. WP10 worked on monitoring and evaluation of the GEP-implementing activities of all 4 RPOs and has submitted the resp. deliverable D10.4 in December 2019 ..

Within the third working period, all WPs have been conducted as foreseen in the DoA. No major deviations occurred.
As for WP2, two project meetings took place. All official requirements have been fulfilled. The working period was predominantly characterized by risk management concerning the Covid-19 situation and the work on long term implementation at the RPO and RFO partner institutions.
Under WP4 all RPOs have reached a different degree of achievement, depending on the context, the starting point and the Covid-19 situation that has presented all partners with new challenges (e.g. new statute and new rector at PK).
WP5 took a look on the RPOs activities concerning female visibility and came up with a comprehensive report on that activities at all RPO partners.
In WP6 all four literature reviews were finalized, the exhibition implemented in nine languages and 5 explanatory videos were produced. While the videos can also be found at YouTube, the reviews and exhibition are available on the GEECCO project website.
Within WP 7 the RFO partners have started calls, which were developed under consideration of gender equity aspects. Concerning research funding, material was released and is available publicly.
All RPO partners finalized and put into effect their GEP 3.0. This was done with the advice from the GEECCO facilitators (YW, B-NK). The GEPs are publicly available as Deliverable 8.4.
Concerning WP 9 dissemination activities on both, national as well as European level, have been further carried out. While at the beginning of the Covid-Pandemic many workshops and conferences have been postponed, the situation is different in 2021. Many conferences that have been cancelled in the previous year will be made up this year. In addition, a joint final conference with the sister project TARGET was organized as an online conference. Likewise, the learnings from the universities were prepared within the framework of a webinar for RFOs.
WP 10: The evaluation team conducted a final evaluation for all RPO and RFO partners, the final evaluation reports are all available publicly. A very detailed and comprehensive tutorial series, including infographics and an explainer video was set up within WP 10. All material is available at GEECCO website:
A promising collaboration with the sister projects CHANGE, TARGET and GRANTed was continued. Especially the GEECCO results from WP 6 and 7 have met great interest from the other projects and have been disseminated to other RPOs and RFOs that are also working on a gender equality strategy.
With innovation and technology playing an increasingly important role in today’s knowledge-based economy, ensuring gender equity in STEM-focused research and education is more important than ever. Thanks to efforts of the GEECCO project, we’re one step closer to achieving such balance. Training materials, explanatory videos, exhibitions have been made available to all those who also want to take steps towards equality in STEM.
From how we move to the way we communicate, work, and recreate – science and engineering play an essential role in our tech-filled lives. By ensuring the consideration of sex and gender in the science and engineering behind much of today’s technology, we also ensure that this technology is equally available and useful to everyone.
Group Foto of GEECCO Consortium
Group Foto of GEECCO Consortium