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|Name of Organisation:||University of Aegean Department of Social Anthropology and History|
|Main implementing organisation:||University of Aegean|
|Line of Business:||The University of Aegean (www.aegean.gr) consist of the following schools: - School of social science - School of environmental studies - School of administration - School of science - School of humanities The departments of the abovementioned schools cover a broad area of scientific fields.|
|End Date:||Still Ongoing|
|Number of Employees||868||42.63 %|
|Transferability of the initiative||Programme has been taken from another context (i.e. country, sector or size of organization)|
|Programme has already been transferred or will be transferred to another context|
|Type of initiative referring to strategic objectives||structural|
|gender in research|
|Type of initiative, located on the stage of career progression of women scientists||Qualification (Higher Education)|
The Postgraduate Programme aims:
Overall, this programme professionally trains young scholars in a deep understanding of the character of gender relations and gender inequality, both cross-culturally and across time. By the end of their studies, students achieve a thorough understanding and knowledge of a wide range of anthropological and historical approaches towards women, gender and equality issues.
The continuation of Programme’s activities with the overall aim to increase the number of studies, events organisation and publications on gender issues and promote gender equality in research.
The programme helps promoting the principle of equality in all areas and combat stereotypes like “Women cannot occupy high level positions in politics and sciences such as Computer and Information Science”.
Every year, 15 students are accepted onto the programme after an assessment of candidates’ applications against published criteria.
Since 2003, the programme has attracted increasing numbers of candidates. The ratio of applications to acceptances moved from 2.5 in 2003-4, to 3.2 in 2005-6.
Many of the students already are, or plan to be, involved in education in Greece, either as teachers or in some other capacity, and that several others have gone on to study towards a Ph.D.
Moreover, the high quality of students and of teaching, is made obvious through a survey of the dissertations written by students over the last three years: the range of topics tackled, the use of a wide range of resources, research techniques and media in producing these texts. Examples of the topics are: “Women mechanics in Greece”, “European Union policies for gender equality within education and professional training: the reproduction of gender stereotypes” etc.
Gender studies are linked to anthropology and history and therefore there was a high interest from the part of a group of academic experts on gender issues in the Department of Social Anthropology to undertake such an initiative.
The University has undertaken several positive measures related to gender equality such as:
- Courses on gender issues were offered by the University before the launch of these initiatives.
- The organisation of conferences, a series of lectures, scientific meetings and workshops that had gender as the central issue
- Scientific research and teaching on the perspective of gender
- Publications and exhibitions
Direct Target Groups:
Indirect Target Groups:
The programme was originally funded by European Union resources administered through EPEAK II (Special Management Service for Corporate Planning in Education and Primary Professional Training, part of the Ministry of Education and Religions), within Measure 4.2, “Programmes supporting women within undergraduate and postgraduate studies; programmes of study and research programmes concerning women”.
The following Work Packages were implemented:
Work Package 1: The commissioning of a series of review studies relating to the themes of the Programme from experienced academics, so as to gain an overview of the current state of scholarship in studies of gender within history and anthropology.
Work Package 2: Call for applications and Selection of Candidates for the Programme.
Work Package 3: Delivery and development of Coursework – the organization of the curriculum and teaching for this Programme. The programme is three semesters long: 2 semesters of taught courses and 1 semester during which students work intensely on their dissertation topic (12,000-15,000 words), with the advice of a main supervisor and a dissertation committee of three members of staff. Students take a total of 8 courses over the 2 semesters, all but one of which are compulsory and designed for the programme. The balance of courses is aimed at ensuring that students receive sufficient training in both anthropological and historical approaches towards gender, as well as training in research methods. The remaining course is selected from the taught courses provided by the Department of Anthropology and History at the University of the Aegean.
Work Package 4: Procuring and development of paper and electronic resources and software - provision of the materials necessary for students to carry out independent study for their degree.
Work Package 5: Linkage of the Programme with research and the job market - extending research on issues relating to the Programme, and exploration of the way this Programme could contribute towards students’ employment.
Work Package 6: Development of the international character of study
Work Package 7: Publicity and Dissemination of Results - a series of fine posters and leaflets have been produced, along with study guides for each year, as well as work produced through the holding of seminars, workshops and conferences (http://www.aegean.gr/gender-postgraduate/drastiriotites.htm).
Work Package 8: Evaluation of the Programme
Work Package 9: Management of the Work.
The success of the implementation of the initiative is mainly attributed to the commitment of the Programme organizers, which is demonstrated by the professional way in which the programme is administered and maintained, the website maintenance, and the wide range of activities (lectures, seminars, workshops and conferences).
The library collection of anthropology texts, including a large number of gender-related texts and a collection of historical texts, was important as well.
The practical challenges that this Programme faces, in particular being based geographically in a region that is relatively difficult to reach from most other parts of Europe and the fact that most of the materials about this Programme are available only in Greek, makes the effort of creating and maintaining international links much more difficult without adequate financial resources.
A questionnaire was developed to ask students about their own perceived relationship between taking this course and their approach towards employment.
The overall results of the survey showed that while graduates did not believe their professional lives had changed, they believed that their understanding of gender issues had substantially developed.
In short, students reported that the Programme had done what it set out to do: develop knowledge which is a resource for students to use in their future employment lives.
This reflects the slow pace at which changes in gender relations and inequality occur within the workplace, and suggests that this Programme must continue well into the future to effect substantive changes in the workplace.
Furthermore, seeking out of more funding for developing international links is important. This should include resources for inviting international scholars, but also funds to allow members of staff and students to attend international events.
Through their dissertations, students are prepared for research e.g. for a Ph.D. on gender inequality, in wider social, political and economic contexts, which has long-term benefits for scientific research outputs of the University.
Through inviting international scholars to attend workshops, seminars and conferences, and involving students in exchange programmes abroad creates links with international gender scholarship and institutions and increases visibility of University activities.
Since 2003, the Programme’s committee has taken every opportunity to improve it during the period it has been running.
The Programme increased the gender-related collection by 250 new texts, and has provided access to a range of electronic resources, as well as keeping students’ past dissertations in the library. In addition, a postgraduate work lab was created, which provides desks and Internet-connected computers that are at the disposal of the students.
A similar initiative was already implemented in Universities in UK, FR and USA and there is communication with other Universities to transfer this initiative.
The University has undertaken several positive measures related to gender equality before the launch of this initiative such as:
- The Organisation of conferences, a series of lectures, scientific meetings and workshops with gender as the central theme
- Scientific research and teaching on the perspective of gender
- Publications and exhibitions.
This programme is a valuable one, both intellectually and in wider economic, political and social terms within Greece, particularly as there are so few degree programmes dedicated to gender studies in Greece.
It has demonstrated its capacity to attract students, to deliver a rigorous programme of teaching and supervision, to organize a whole host of additional academic activities, and to be flexible enough to develop and improve the Programme over the years. Moreover, it is one of the few Programmes in Greece that address questions of gender and gender inequality, and given that it is doing this to such a high level of administrative and intellectual professionalism, it is providing an extremely important contribution towards the European Union’s aims of tackling issues of gender inequality.
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