Pathways to Success: Bringing a Gender Lens to the Scientific Leadership of Global Challenges

GenderInSite (2018)

Cite: GenderInSITE, (2018). Pathways to Success: Bringing a Gender Lens to the Scientific Leadership of Global Challenges [Online] Available at: http://hdl.handle.net/20.500.11911/113

Report

This report explores the issue of women’s leadership in science and brings to the discussion some related issues not usually taken into consideration. The initial motivation was to look at the career trajectories of women in positions of scientific leadership to show how power and knowledge can cohere in institutions to create and maintain dominant pathways. The report demonstrates the importance of having a gender perspective that would assure ‘equal opportunity for entry and advancement into larger-scale science, technology, engineering, mathematics disciplines (STEM) and innovation systems’, one of the transformative actions so aptly de-scribed by the UN Commission on Science and Technology for Development (UNCSTD) Gender Advisory Board. Through interviews with women and men who lead inter-national science and technology projects, the document highlights different pathways to success and how institutional change is so elusive and hard to achieve. However, when the authors looked at respondents’ individual pathways, they decided that, although it was important to demonstrate that alternative perspectives are possible, they would enlarge their perspective and look at other levels of analysis. By highlighting alternative perspectives on how systems of scientific production operate, this report promotes alternative narratives and pathways in science. In these narratives, gender is recognised as an important factor in the career and leadership trajectories of individual scientists and in how science for sustainable development is done.