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Gender Aspects in Focus

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Excellent research requires a gender-sensitive approach. The funding guideline Gender Aspects in Focus of the Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) deals with questions relating to the systematic integration of the gender dimension in scientific work. The DLR Projektträger (DLR-PT) is assisting the BMBF with implementation.

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5th August 2021 — Research that only takes one gender into account can lead to incomplete results. To prevent this, gender aspects must be included in the research process where relevant. Medical research in the context of the Corona pandemic has shown that a gender-sensitive approach to diagnosis and prevention yields more accurate findings. Gender-oriented climate research also provides evidence that genders are affected differently by the impacts of climate change. Cities and infrastructures can become safer and more mobility-balanced if planning considers the living conditions of all people. Image and speech recognition technologies based on self-learning algorithms should be programmed to detect and eliminate bias and gaps in datasets and systems.

These examples show that considering gender aspects in the research process is indeed relevant to real life. This is why the BMBF's funding guideline states: "Science and research [are] required to focus their work on the needs of all people and to take into account that the results may have different consequences for different genders." Only through differentiated analyses can adequate adaptation strategies be found for current and future societal challenges.

With the funding guideline Gender Aspects in Focus, innovative structural projects with model character that contribute to integrating gender aspects into research will be supported in the coming years. This means that the question of how relevant the consideration of gender aspects is for research questions, methods and content is to be systematically and permanently integrated into the research process and structurally anchored. Universities, non-university research institutions and researching small and medium-sized enterprises are to be supported in developing and implementing structure-building concepts and in making their sustainable, structural measures known to the (specialist) public.

DLR-PT implements the funding of innovative structural projects

DLR-PT is responsible for implementing the funding guidelines on behalf of the BMBF. Funding is provided in two phases. In the first phase, the structure-building concepts will be developed. Subsequently, projects with particularly promising concepts are to be selected. In the second phase, these projects will receive funding for up to five years to implement their concepts. Up to 50,000 euros per project is available for projects in the concept phase and up to 850,000 euros each for projects in the implementation phase.

The experts at DLR-PT have many years of experience in the fields of equal opportunities and gender research. This enables them to provide technical and administrative support for the projects to be funded. DLR-PT organises expert discussions with the BMBF and information events for those interested in funding, advises institutions submitting applications and supports the grant recipients in all phases of project funding. "Our in-depth knowledge in the field of gender research and our many years of experience with gender equality and research policy measures to achieve gender equality form the basis for our topic- and measure-specific advisory and support activities during the application process, during the funding phase and during the processing of the results," says Dr Evelyn Hayn, Scientific Officer in the Equal Opportunities, Gender Research, Diversity department at DLR-PT. "By overseeing the funding guideline, we are helping to ensure that excellent science and research and, where appropriate, innovative products and services based on it are oriented towards the benefits for all people."
For many years, DLR-PT has been responsible for implementing projects on equal opportunities and gender-equitable topics on behalf of the BMBF. For example, DLR-PT has been supporting the Federal Government in implementing the Federal and State programme for Women Professors since 2008. The National Pact for Women in STEM Professions initiated by the BMBF has also been backed by DLR-PT since 2008. It pursues the goal of inspiring and attracting more girls and young women to the STEM sector. From 2016 to 2021, a total of 55 projects were supported by DLR-PT in the funding guideline Erfolg mit MINT (Success with STEM). Last year, the BMBF launched the Innovative Women in Focus funding guideline, an initiative aimed at making the scientific achievements and innovative ideas of women more visible in society.

Main and Other Contacts

Contact at DLR Projektträger