Recommendations of the German Science and Humanities Council: Anchoring gender research more broadly


On July 10, 2023, the German Science and Humanities Council published recommendations for the further development of gender research in Germany.


Based on an analysis and assessment of the status quo of gender research in the German science landscape, the German Science and Humanities Councils gave recommendations and impulses to anchor it more broadly and to develop it further.

On the one hand, a strengthening of the discipline of gender studies itself is necessary in order to promote sustainable research structures, the further development of methods and professional exchange as well as the (international) visibility of research. On the other hand, broadening the perspective to include interdisciplinary research is important. The gender perspective is still insufficiently taken into account, especially in STEM fields, medicine, law and economics, and there is a lack of structures, for example in the form of funding criteria, professorships with special denominations, and doctoral programs, to build up this interdisciplinary perspective. This would require the commitment of university administrations, but also the commitment of researchers who are already established in gender research.

In the area of funding, the acquisition of larger collaborative research projects in the area of gender research would be desirable. In addition, universities could also provide targeted incentives to take the gender perspective into account in research projects in any discipline, provided it is relevant, for example in the form of appropriate criteria or special funds in internal funding, as already exists at the DFG (German Research Foundation), for example. Likewise, this includes involving people in review panels who are sensitized to these issues and can include them in the assessment.

Gender research can be institutionalized, for example, through more networking with other universities and research institutions as well as through the establishment and expansion of special (also interdisciplinary) professorships with gender denomination.

The anchoring of corresponding content in degree programs or through certificate programs would also be desirable. Certificates that combine import teaching with fixed components can, for example, create a link to one's own subject discipline in the STEM subjects.
PhD students, who link gender studies with other disciplines in the interdisciplinary area or also enhance methods,  cultures as well as different discourses of the disciplines with each other, can be encouraged by enabling double supervision and graduate colleges as well as doctoral programs. Foreign-language contributions to gender research are particularly worthy of support in order to make research in Germany more visible in the international research field and to tie in with debates there.
In these measures, it is important not to confuse the integration of gender perspectives into the research content in other disciplines with structural measures to promote equal opportunities, equality and diversity.

Further Information as well as the recommendations can be found in the press release of the German Science and Humanities Council (German).