Gender Dimension in Research

“Gender dimension” means integrating sex and gender analysis into research. The term was developed within the European Commission.

The Gendered Innovations project offers Methods of Sex and Gender Analysis to be integrated into all phases of basic and applied research—from setting priorities, to funding decisions, to establishing project objectives and methodologies, to data gathering, analyzing results, and evaluation. (Gender cannot simply be added-on late in the project.) The goal of integrating sex and gender is to ensure excellence in research. The gender dimension is about harnessing the creative power of gender analysis to discover new things.

"Gender mainstreaming” or “gender equality in research careers,” by contrast, applies to participation and seeks to promote gender equality in professions. It is important to distinguish three strategic approaches to gender equality:

The gender dimension is featured in the European Commission’s Horizon 2020, its next funding framework. Article 15 promotes the “gender dimension in research and innovation content” (European Commission, 2011b).

Other research agencies have also integrated sex and gender analysis into research—agencies of note in this regard are the Irish Research Council and the Canadian Institutes of Health Research. For policies of major granting agencies, see:

Works Cited

  • European Commission. (2011a). Structural Change in Research Institutions: Enhancing Excellence, Gender Equality, and Efficiency in Research and Innovation. Luxembourg: Office for Official Publications of the European Communities.
  • European Commission. (2011b). Regulation of the European Parliament and of the Council: Establishing Horizon 2020‚ The Framework Programme for Research and Innovation, 2014-2020, Article 15. Brussels: European Commission.
  • National Science Foundation (NSF). ADVANCE—Increasing the participation and advancement of women in academic science and engineering careers. (6 Jan 2014).