Women in science

EESC opinion: Women in science

Key points

EESC recommendations

To the European Commission:

  • to propose a recommendation to Member States containing common guidelines on institutional change to promote gender equality in universities and research institutions;
  • to continue developing and implementing awareness programmes aimed at attracting more girls into STEM fields (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) and more women into research;
  • to ensure greater cooperation between the relevant Commission directorates (DG Education and Culture and DG Research and Innovation);
  • to collect and disseminate sex-disaggregated data related to research and innovation within the Eurostat framework.

To the Member States:

  • to improve their legal and policy frameworks for gender equality in research;
  • to ensure that expenditure on research & development reaches 3% of GDP, the level set in the Europe 2020 strategy;
  • to make European Structural Funds and other funding schemes available for institutional change initiatives;
  • to link the evaluation, accreditation and funding of research institutions and organisations to their performance on gender equality;
  • to explore ways of ensuring a work-life balance by developing and implementing family-friendly policies for both female and male researchers;
  • to support and strengthen the dialogue between research institutions, businesses and related social partners.

To research stakeholders:

  • to ensure gender balance in their decision-making, selection and other relevant departments;
  • to increase the dialogue with publishers and editors of scientific publications in order to increase female scientists' contributions to scientific publications.