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Women constitute 52% of the total European population and 59% of first level university graduates, but they only represent 40% of employed scientists and engineers, and 30% of start-up entrepreneurs. Moreover, women hold less than 10% of patent applications. The figures justify efforts by the European Commission to tackle the gender gap in science and innovation. The Commission has developed the Gender Equality in Academia and Research organisations (GEAR) tool. It also proposes Horizon 2020 calls to target the gender gap in research and innovation. On this international day of women and girls in science, let us review the already-funded projects and the upcoming calls.

A number of projects aimed at implementing gender equality plans have already been funded by Horizon 2020:

  • The GEARING-Roles project compares the implementation of six gender equality plans in addressing gender inequality among participating consortium members.
  • EQUAL4EUROPE will look at removing barriers to the recruitment, retention, and career progression of female researchers by developing tools and best practices for institutions to address gender imbalances in decision-making processes; and better integrate gender themes into research and innovation content.
  • Gender-SMART is about achieving gender equality in Research Organizations operating in the agricultural and life sciences research field.
  • The LeTSGEPs project will foster the use of Gender Budgeting (GB), since budgets reflect real policy commitments.
  • The SPEAR project offers through its Community of Learning (CoL) and Community of Practice (CoP) support to research organisations to successfully and sustainably implement of gender equality plans.
  • The CALIPER project will implement gender equality plans by engaging national and regional innovation ecosystems in the partners’ countries engaging national and regional innovation ecosystems in the partners’ countries.

This page shows a lot more projects funded by Horizon 2020 to tackle the gender gap.

Open Horizon 2020 calls

There are 3 upcoming Horizon 2020 calls targeting gender gap, all with a deadline on the 15 April:

  • Supporting research organisations to implement gender equality plans (SwafS-09-2018-2019-2020): the third edition of this Coordination and Support Action call, which the projects listed above belong to, aims at implementing gender equality plans within research organisations.
  • Gender-based violence including sexual harassment in research organisations and universities (SwafS-25-2020): this Research and Innovation Action call will fund projects that recommend actions to tackle gender-based violence within research organisations based on investigative actions.
  • Innovators of the future: bridging the gender gap (SwafS-26-2020): Coordination and Support Action call will fund projects that implement actions to support the uptake of female innovations.