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RFOs CoP on gender-based violence

8 February 2023

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The third meeting of the GENDERACTIONplus RFO Community of Practice took place at the end of January 2023. In addition to sharing information on new developments in the field of gender equality in RFOs, the results of the needs assessment were presented, and Fredrik Bondestam from the Swedish Secretariat for Gender Reasearch, the WP3 leader, gave a talk about the role RFOs play in mitigating gender-based violence in academia.

One of the results from the need assessment survey is to build capacities on intersectionality, something that the upcoming mutual learning workshop in Vienna in May 2023 will address, questions were posed to the RFO CoP members in the Menti platform about the challenges they have encountered and if they have any best practices to share at the Vienna workshop.

In the second part of the CoP meeting, Fredrik Bondestam presented the findings from the UniSAFE project on gender-based violence (GBV) in academia. According to him, RFOs should contribute to developing the indicators and monitoring of GBV in research-performing organisations. RFOs should consider measures that would disallow a single PI from controlling an entire project budget as this can be potentially used as a means of committing economic violence against team members. In addition, they should set up a whistle-blowing system with budgetary sanctions as a result of RPOs not tackling reported abuse. The future work on this issue within WP3 of the GENDERACTIONplus project will focus on the identification of the current and future preventive measures in RFOs in the national contexts and the development of a zero-tolerance policy to ensure researchers applying for funding are not experiencing GBV. After the presentation, breakout sessions were organised to discuss how RFOs can strengthen the prevention of GBV in RPOs. The RFOs CoP will be involved in developing the outputs of the GBV tasks ahead.