In a globalised and networked world people from different ethnic and social backgrounds, of different genders, ages and lifestyles live and work together. Diversity has long been a part of every-day society. Integrating such diversity into a whole is one challenge. A major aspect within this is gender equality.
The number of women in leadership positions, especially the in fields of environment and technology, is still small. Income differences between men and women still exist. On the other hand, this is a very attractive field to work in, both in terms of subject-matter and financial return. As so many studies have found that diverse teams are more successful, this demonstrates a considerable loss of innovation potential for this crucial area of work.
Furthermore, the low number of women in leadership positions also means that there are fewer women taking part in expert meetings or jury sessions. Women cannot participate in environment and technology issues in the same way as men. Women’s viewpoints and life-experience are only taken into account to a limited degree. This means that gender dimensions within environment and technology topics are often not recognised.
Therefore, it is important that women working in the field of environment and technology are made visible in order to support their careers and to turn them into role models. The culture within this profession must change so that women and men have equal chances for development. The real-life experiences of men and women should be taken into account equally in both research projects and socio-political initiatives to improve quality of life for all.
In the field of Gender & Diversity, our work touches on
- improving the professional framework and entry requirements for women in science and technology;
- creating equal opportunities for women and men within organisational culture;
- improving the visibility of successful women working within the fields of science and technology;
- increasing awareness of gender dimensions in the areas of environment and technology;
- achieving increased awareness of gender-relevant research topics.