Research design has a significant impact on our daily lives as well as our understanding of how things work, our universe and the world and societies we live in. Most research funders want to ensure that the research teams they are funding are reflective of our society but increasingly many now want to ensure that diversity, particularly, gender and sex diversity are considered in research design. Thanks to initiatives such as Gendered Innovations, we have a number of examples that highlight why sex and gender need to be considered at the outset of research design in STEM subject areas. For example, air bags started to be used in car design in the mid 1970s and for decades, pregnant women travelling in the front passenger seat of a car were advised to turn off front passenger airbags. It was not until 2002 that the first pregnant female crash test dummy was designed by Laura Thackery for Volvo. The latter specifically relates to sex but other studies have explored how both sex and gender interact. There have been a number of studies that have found passive smoking to have a more significant impact on the health of girls than the health of boys. Where the studies have explored cultural and environmental factors, they have found that the differential impact could be due to gendered differences in play as boys tended to play outdoors more than girls, thereby reducing their exposure to indoor passive smoking.
In the arts, humanities, social sciences, business and law, there is less information on how sex and gender are being considered in research design and the impact that this has had on the advancement of sex and gender equity in our society. In many fields, it is likely to be considered through the inclusion of women as research subjects or the selection of particular research methodologies, but how can we demonstrate the impact in relation to evolution of approaches and the impact of research outcomes for sex and gender equity in our society?
This colloquium invites participants to share how they, their department or their institution have sought to embed consideration of sex and gender in research design. By way of a keynote session, participant-led workshops and presentations, and a closing plenary, the event will offer insights about these issues as well as examples and ideas for evolving the consideration of diversity in research design. Drawing on practical examples of approaches to and impact of research, evidence and informed practice the event will appeal to academics and professional staff involved in the development of research strategy and research grant applications as well as those leading and implementing research projects.
- The consideration of sex and gender in research design and how it intersects with other equality areas.
- The consideration of gender and sex in research design in the Arts, Humanities, Social Sciences, Business and Law.
- The impact of consideration of gender and sex in research design and how its consideration, in comparison to previous approaches, has resulted in different outcomes for gender and sex equity.
Call for contributions
The call for contributions is now open.
We invite colleagues to submit an abstract for either a 20-minute presentation or a 40-minute workshop as detailed below:
Presentations – Colleagues are asked to submit an abstract of up to 200 words outlining the focus of the presentation and potential benefits to participants of attending. Please indicate how your abstract relates to one or more of the colloquium themes (see above). Presentations are 20 minutes long and are to be structured to include 15 minutes ‘presentation time’ to leave sufficient opportunity for audience questions.
Workshops – Colleagues preferring a workshop format are asked to submit an abstract of up to 200 words. This should outline the focus of the workshop and online activities to be included. Please provide an explanation of activities (one or more) to be included, participant ‘takeaways’ (i.e. what participants will gain from attending the workshop) and indicate how the workshop aligns to one or more of the colloquium themes (see above). Workshops are 40 minutes long. When planning your activities, please bear in mind that the event will be online. Facilities on Zoom such as virtual breakout rooms will be available.
Deadline for submissions is midnight, 4 March 2021.
We are particularly keen on receiving proposals that focus on the Arts, Humanities, Social Sciences, Business and Law, however, proposals can also address gender equality in research design in STEM subjects as well. We also welcome proposals that explore the intersectionality between gender and sex and other equality characteristics in research design.
Please note that all submissions (both presentations and workshops) will be reviewed according to the following criteria.
- Relevance to colloquium focus and themes.
- Gender equality in research design and its intersection with other equality areas e.g. race and disability.
- Reference to research impact on gender equity in comparison to past or similar research initiatives.
- Evidence of successfully embedding gender equity considerations into research design.
Who should attend?
This event will appeal to academics and professional staff involved in the development of research strategy and research grant applications as well as those leading and implementing research projects. Equality and diversity practitioners, HE lecturers, staff involved with Athena SWAN charter applications and anyone else with responsibility for advancing equality and diversity within their institution would also benefit from participation in the event.