Framing CASPER in a complex policy scenario. First deliverable is out!

The CASPER team is proud of announcing the completion of its first output, “D3.1 Policy Framing Report”, an outcome of the initial efforts in the project’s life cycle dedicated to “Mapping the landscape in terms of initiatives aiming at awarding and certifying gender equality in research” (WP1). The report was prepared by project partner , with contribution from and input from all consortium’s members.

Intending to identify the main windows of opportunities for the creation of a European level certification on gender equality in Higher Education and Research, the report offers an overview of the current European policy frameworks regarding quality and excellence in Research and Higher Education; the overview also has the objective of understanding if/how such frameworks embed gender equality considerations.

Several ‘convergence’ dynamics are observed that will enable CASPER scenarios to widely resonate with the policy reforms that Universities and Research Organizations are facing nowadays: indeed, the two traditionally separate institutional policy frameworks and structures, Bologna Process and EHEA (European Higher Education Area) on one side and ERA (European Research Area) on the other, are increasingly coordinating their efforts, and both of them are taking into account gender equality, diversity, inclusion - although in different ways. The report takes account of these differences, suggesting initial reflections on how to properly integrate the indicators that are already in use as well as on which specific mechanisms, arguments, and discursive hooks are to be devised in the future course of the CASPER feasibility study.

Further issues that are subject of study in the report are the transition from Horizon 2020 to Horizon Europe (crucial to for connecting CASPER with the new research funding programme to incentivize RPOs to enter a certification process); the growing importance of adopting intersectional approaches; and the interconnections and synergies between Research Organizations, and HEIs, and their entrepreneurial and civic milieus.

Last but not least, D3.1 also includes a preliminary mapping of the most representative certification and award systems which relate to gender equality and diversity: such initial screening has been the starting point for the work of the 32 national gender researchers who have been engaged in the preparations of the forthcoming deliverable for conducting a more systematic mapping of the existing schemes.

The report is available for download from the Zenodo repository. Please cite as: