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Virginija Šidlauskienė

Virginija Šidlauskienė Print page

Virginija Šidlauskienė attended the international conference Structural Change for Gender Equality in Research and Innovation: Contextual Factors, which took place on 19 May 2017 in Prague.

Virginija Šidlauskienė is a chief researcher of the Centre for Social Innovation Research (Gender Studies and Research Division) at Šiauliai University in Lithuania. Her experience covers inequality policies and gender mainstreaming at national and EU level.

During her career, she has dealt with gender equality indicators, gender mainstreaming and social innovations by gender equality plans at academic institutions (EQUAL Initiative: Family-Friendly University). She has also carried out gender equality research in the EU’s FP6, FP7 (PROMETEA; HELENA; ISWA; INTEGER), COST programs and national ESF projects.

She has also worked with the Steering Committee for Equality between Women and Men (Council of Europe) on the measurement of critical areas of concern of the Beijing Platform for Action. Furthermore, she is an expert at the Directorate-General for Human Rights of the Council of Europe and a member of the Working Group on the Implementation of Horizontal Politics under the Lithuanian Ministry of Finance. Virginija Šidlauskienė holds a doctorate in social sciences.

She published more than 100 research papers and she is Editor-in-Chief of scientific journal Gender Studies and Research.

 

 

Abstract of her paper:

THE POTENTIAL CONTEXTS FROM INTEGER PROJECT

In developing of ŠU approach to institutional transformational change, we employed multiple conceptual frameworks. Main impacts of project INTEGER:

  1. Improvement / alteration of Minimal Position Qualifying Requirements for Research and Higher Education Institution Research Workers. If a request of a member of the teaching or research staff is made, the time period of pregnancy, birth and childcare leave can be excluded from the Regulated time frame in which the minimal qualifying requirements should be met. The tenure can be extended for the time of leave as well. The target group for this measure is not only researchers at SU but rather researchers nation-wide. As of January 29th, 2014 it was adopted in Seimas and is now the official law.
  2. Project INTEGER at ŠU paved a pioneering way for future gender equality implementation in the national HEI context – together with the Ministry of Science Recommendation on ensuring of equal opportunities between women and men at higher education and research institutions (2015) were developed and passed by Ministry of Science and Education.
  3. In the initial stage of the project, after the analysis of baseline data, discussions with the teams and the initial drafting of the GAP at ŠU, the awareness raising and learning on daily academic basis was created: I Am Learning, I Am Changing, We Are Learning, and We Are Changing! was developed. The initial aim of the programme was to motivate and to encourage employee self-motivation; to encourage curiosity; relation of everyday activities to equality between women and men and learning to strive for balance (self-learning). After the pilot of this Programme we identified the lack of systemic knowledge. We set up an idea the project might enhance researchers’ possibilities to effectively implement the trainings and change strategies through the everyday norms and practices they enact at University (academic routine). As a result we developed a Training Module - Mainstreaming Gender Equality for Change of the University with non-traditional learning modes and goal of changing the thinking of the academic staff.
  4. Surely, sometimes, the INTEGER GAP implementation at University was chaotic, because STEM researchers’ cognition is based on clear instrumental rationality or technological thinking (David F. Channell, 2015) based on clear, step by step activities / procedures, which in their understanding, should bring academic staff real outcomes (products). As a matter of fact, the implementation of social dimension and innovations is long-lasting and requires more social interactions in order to gain gender equality understanding which have the capacity to change the behaviour of academic staff at Universities.