Portugal has a large proportion of women ISCED 5-8 graduates, including in non-traditional fields such as Science, Technology and Mathematics (STEMs) and yet, the number of women in management positions within Higher Education Institutions (e.g Heads of Departments, Deans, Vice Rectors, Rectors, and Full Professors) remains awfully low (She Figures 2016). Policies requiring balanced representation in decision making have been introduced in the political and company sectors. The Government plans to extend said regime to HEI as part of a more structural gender equality policy in higher education. There is a need to define and test systematic ways and produce recommendations to integrate gender equality in HE.
Involving analyses of secondary data on gender equality in higher education (e.g., students/programmes, student progression, retention, degree outcomes; proportion of women in management positions), as well as analyses of qualitative data gathered through interviews with key informants and case studies, this project will contribute to a better understanding of gender equality issues and to the development of tools to address gender inequalities and increase gender equality awareness in HEI (including a set of recommendations to develop gender equality criteria for the assessment and accreditation of HEI and study programmes). The partnership with the Center for Gender Research (RIKK), from Iceland, will provide the opportunity to exchange experiences between the countries on the topic of the project. It is intended to transfer both experiences in this field to each country. Gendered study subject preferences and strategies to promote gender equality in HEI are considered as important policy areas for both countries seeking to ensure equality for both men and women.
All of this is line with the EEA grants overall objectives and the specific programme focus on the promotion of gender equality and gender mainstreaming in education and vocational training.
Project Website here.