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Research Council launches gender balance barometer

The Research Council of Norway now provides statistics over gender distribution in the grant applications submitted and awarded funding. These statistics also include an overview of the gender distribution among project managers from the institutions submitting the most proposals to the Council.

“The Research Council is working to promote gender balance in its administration of research funding. Therefore, we apply moderate gender quotas for the underrepresented gender when awarding research funding. The new gender balance barometer will show the effects of our efforts, as well as the degree to which the institutions are achieving a good balance in the grant applications they submit,” says John-Arne Røttingen, Chief Executive of the Research Council.

Application and allocation statistics currently available for 2013 to 2016

The barometer can be accessed via the Research Council's website, and shows the gender ratio among project managers in grant applications for research and innovation projects in the years 2013 to 2016 as well as among project managers in projects that were allocated funding during the same period.

We want to stay up-to-date on the overall effect of our gender balance efforts, so we have created a gender balance barometer, says John-Arne Røttingen. (Photo: Thomas Keilman) The barometer will be updated with figures for 2017 as soon as all applications from that year have been processed, and will subsequently be updated once a year.

“The gender ratio can vary widely from call to call, particularly in areas where there are few allocations. The barometer is an important tool for monitoring the overall effect of our actions to address gender balance,” says Dr Røttingen.

Gender distribution in applications submitted by institutions

One of the keys to improving gender balance in Research Council allocations is to ensure that the gender ratio of project managers in grant applications is not skewed. Therefore, the barometer also shows the gender balance in proposals from the institutions that submit the most applications.

“Gender balance is a product of the institutions’ academic and scientific profiles. We want to show the variation between different sectors and institutions as a means of raising awareness,” Dr Røttingen explains, adding:   

“We hope the institutions themselves will find it interesting to follow the figures and developments over time. We will continue to refine the barometer to make it as useful as possible for the institutions to use in their own activities.”

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