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Gender equality is a key priority of the European Research Area (ERA). Three objectives underpin the European Commission’s strategy on gender equality in research and innovation policy:
The Council Conclusions on Advancing gender equality in the European Research Area (adopted in 2015) emphasize the need to foster sustainable cultural and institutional change in the ERA national action plans or strategies at the level of Member States and research institutions. The Council also invites EU Member States and research funding organisations to provide incentives to encourage higher education institutions and research organisations to revise or develop gender mainstreaming strategies and/or gender equality plans and to mobilise adequate resources.
For research organisations to have a Gender Equality Plan (GEP) is getting more and more important. In Germany for example, national research financing organisations set having a GEP as an eligibility criterion.
The European Commission wants to stimulate research organisations to develop a GEP. In the specific context of research organisations and higher education institutions, the European Commission considers a GEP as a set of actions aimed at:
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