Realizing that the low representation of women in science and engineering is a major hindrance to global capacity building in science and technology, the IAC formed an Advisory Panel on Women for science with the mandate to review previous studies, provide examples of effective projects already implemented, and issue a set of actionable recommendations addressed particularly to the world’s science and engineering academies.
The recommendations and action items developed through the work of this Panel are presented in this report and are grouped around three themes:
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Diversity: Characterizes a group marked by visible and non-visible differences between its members—such as sex, race, sexual orientation, age, and religious belief —that enrich their mutual interaction.
Equal treatment: Treating women and men in the same way, such as offering equal pay for equal work. Does not account for differences in employment characteristics of women and men.
First faculty positions: Posts in higher education filled by those who are academically young—i.e., have modest publication records.
Gender: The social differences between women and men that are learned, evolve over time, and vary between countries and cultures. For example, women give birth (biologically determined),, but biology does not determine who raises children (gendered behaviour).
Gender blindness: Completely ignoring the gender dimension in setting policy, with the consequence that the policy usually benefits men over women (given that men are already in the majority).
Gender equal: Human beings are free to develop their abilities and make choices, with no limit set by gender roles.
Gender sensitive: Being aware of differential impact of customs, policies and practices on women and men.
Glass ceiling: Invisible barrier that prevents women from rising to the top levels of organizations.
Horizontal gender segregation: The differential concentration rates, by gender, in certain occupational sectors or disciplines.
Inclusiveness: An organizational culture in which all members of a diverse work-force contribute to the organization to the best of their ability. In the present context, this implies a gender-sensitive and gender-fair environment.
Leaky pipeline: The gradual loss of women from the science career path, even if women and men go into higher education in equal numbers.
Positive (or affirmative) action: An incentive to an underrepresented group in order to redress any disadvantages.
Positive discrimination: Choosing a person from an underrepresented group, regardless of whether they are the best person for the activity or post.
Sex: The biologically determined difference between women and men.
Sex-disaggregated statistics: Statistics separated out by sex.
Vertical gender segregation: Differentials in the positions of women and men within the hierarchies of a field.