Gender Equality

Project Baltic Gender

Scientific marine research has been a work area dominated by men for a long time. This has considerably changed in recent years. On research ships as well as in laboratories ashore women and men from all around the globe work together in research on interdisciplinary projects. However, this pleasant development is not visible on the management levels of marine research yet. As in many work areas the percentage of women drops significantly after PhD. It is even more distinct in professorships and leading positions in technical deparments.

With the "Baltic Gender Project" eight research institutions from five states from the Baltic Sea area (Sweden, Finland, Estonia, Lithunia, Germany) seek to change this. The EU sponsors this project with 2,2 million Euro. It is coordinated by the GEOMAR Helmholtz-Centre for Ocean Research Kiel. The overall aim of "Baltic Gender" is to develop effective and meaningful indicators, which can be used by the institutions to achieve their goals of gender equalitiy in their development planning. This shall also contribute to the improvement of career opportunities for women in marine sciences.

The work package located at the Kiel University is concerned with structural changes that have the potencial to promote gender equality in institutions. The central question is how structures and processes within the partnering institutions affect women and men. In focus are recruitment procedures, decision-making structures and the allocation of resources. The best practice catalogue "Gender equality in marine sciences. Best practices on structural change" comprises a collection of measures, which are especially supportive for improving the gender-fairness of institutional processes and structures. It includes recommendations for all institutions planning to adapt the presented measures. Additionally, indicators to measure structural improvements are developed in this work package, in order to derive targets for gender equality plans from these indicators. Further information on selected Kiel-based best practices can be found in the press release from Nov. 20th 2018 (in German).

Other work packages of "Baltic Gender" emphasise like career development of female scientists, network building, the compatibility of family and sientific research and the integration of gender aspects in research and teaching into marine sciences. Beside, "Baltic Gender" is brought to life by various activities, information and oppurtunities for participation. For example, female scientists are presented in a blog, a mentoring programme was established and workshops on topics like gender aspects in teaching are offered.