Gender Mainstreaming in Science and Technology

A Reference Manual for Governments and Other Stakeholders

image of Gender Mainstreaming in Science and Technology
This is one of the sectoral guides that are part of the Gender Management System (GMS) resource kit, a series of publications presenting GMS. GMS is an innovative system developed by the Commonwealth Secretariat for gender mainstreaming. The system is a comprehensive network of structures, mechanisms and processes for bringing a gender perspective to bear on all government policies, plans, programmes and projects. The kit consists of a handbook which presents the GMS in detail; sectoral guides to gender mainstreaming in specific sectors; and resource documents to assist the user in gender analysis, monitoring, evaluation and other aspects of gender mainstreaming. Each sectoral guide also has a corresponding Quick Guide a short, userfriendly publication presenting the essential points. It is designed for policymakers, planners, field staff and other government personnel involved in gender mainstreaming, as well as for academic users, NGOs, the private sector and others who have a stake in advancing gender equality and equity.

This guide examines the major gender issues in science and technology among governments, professional associations and related agencies, and provides examples of good practice and tools for mainstreaming gender. It explores issues such as science by whom and for whom, including: “the leaky S&T pipeline” (why girls and women in S&T school streams and career paths opt out, creating enabling environments); what type of health science research is being publicly funded; science and technology as a key ingredient of development and how appropriate is technology to women’s and men’s needs; do the new information and communication technologies impact differently on women and men; how can advances in agricultural biodiversity empower rural women and men, increase food security and protect indigenous knowledge; what are the gender issues in preventing and recovering from natural and manmade disasters.



Selected Issues in Science and Technology: The Gender Dimension

This chapter explores selected issues in science and technology where a gender perspective provides a fresh way of viewing and formulating public policy. Looking at science and technology through a gendered lens means examining perceptions, practice, policy, impacts and beneficiaries. In doing so, it raises a number of questions: What are the perceptions of science and technology that lead to gender biased practice and policy? And how do gender biases in practice and policy affect perceptions in their turn? How do science and technology policies and programmes impact differently on the lives of women and men? What constitutes scientific knowledge? Whose knowledge has value and who decides what it is worth? Does knowledge have to be validated by science in order to have worth? And how can we promote a greater respect for various knowledge systems?


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