Marcela Linková

Gender equality is one of the five priorities of the European Research Area. While it is clear that we are making progress in Europe, a lot remains to be done, and at various levels. Member States play a crucial role in this endeavour as they are responsible for creating the legislative and institutional environment. This is important for research and higher education institutions as well as funding agencies to be able to implement gender equality plans in order to achieve cultural and institutional change.

This is where GENDERACTION comes into play. Funded by Horizon 2020, our goal is to create a policy community to advance the implementation of the gender priority in the European Research Area. We are doing this through networking, sharing good practices and exchanging on various policy solutions as well as providing trainings to relevant stakeholders. To achieve this we have set up a network of national representatives from EU Member States and Associated Countries.

In GENDERACTION we recognize that we are at different stages of gender equality implementation in Europe. We want to learn from these differences but also push for further advancement so that gender equality actions do not focus just on partial topics that are perhaps less controversial such as work-life balance but also on the more comprehensive approach embodied in the cultural and institutional changes approach. Cooperation with the ERAC Standing Working Group on Gender in Research and Innovation is clearly a high priority for us, and some of the SWG GRI members are involved in GENDERACTION.

Our target groups for trainings, mutual learning, policy advice and communication include: national authorities and bodies related to ERA implementation and EU R&I policy, relevant members of the European Parliament, National Contact Points, H2020 programme committee members, ERA Stakeholder Platform Organizations, EU-funded projects promoting gender equality in research organizations, European Institute for Gender Equality, European Platform of Women Scientists, and others.

We hope that with GENDERACTION we will create a platform that will set the gender equality agenda until 2020 and beyond.