Empirical Survey Tool

Leading partner – University of Belgrade Faculty of Law

The Empirical Survey Tool for Gender Equality will be completed by the Belgrade Faculty of Law and agreed upon by other Consortium members for final corrections and approval during the first year. This will be the first questionnaire based on a systemic approach to all relevant dimensions for researching the quality of gender equality in academic institutions. It will mean a standardised new tool, applicable to all other faculties and universities. It will follow the lines of already existent questionnaires, but will add a systemic and all-encompassing, comprehensive approach, meaning that questions will be articulated in a way that covers as much as possible of the personal opinions of the university professors regarding all relevant fields of interest – institutional design, educational framework and cultural settings. In that sense, this empirical survey will be very innovative. Another innovation in this research will be the comparative approach to the results based on equal questions put to equally educated individuals in five culturally very different university environments. This questionnaire will be created with three dimensions – institutional, educational and cultural – in the context of academia. In addition to that, there will be a differentiation of male and female identity, as well as other gender identities. The opinions of the same number of staff representatives of 5 universities will be focused on three dimensions regarding gender (in)equality: a) institutional framework (quality of rules and regulations regarding career promotion, gender pay gap, maternity leave and parental leave, family friendly institutional support, new jobs` announcements, protection from sexual harassment and mobbing, as well as from family violence), b) educational framework – quality of gender (in)sensitivity of the study programmes, syllabi and textbooks, as well as of the pedagogical approach and “the hidden curriculum” (value statements, prejudices, and stereotypes implied in the communication and relation between academic staff in itself and between professors and students); and c) cultural setting – value systems, stereotypes, prejudices of the professors regarding gender issues in academia (personal estimate of the necessity of gender equality, how it should or could be reached, do women have equal capacities and/or equal opportunities, what “fair share of private and professional duties” should mean, what should be a family friendly institutional design, is positive discrimination necessary…).

Relevant and indicative questions will be given to academic staff of a similar educational background in legal and social sciences, but in culturally very different partner countries. The results will express comparative differences or similarities among the personal opinions of university professors about the gender equality issue within the three referential dimensions, and it will indicate to what extent these similarities or differences have been impacted by education, and by other factors of influence. In other words, these results will indicate how much of an impact does the cultural, religious, and historical background have on differences in statements and value systems among the persons of the same and similar educational achievements. The aim is to get empirically valid insights into the given state of affairs in these university centres regarding the value statements and gender issue awareness of their staff members. The aim is also to take into consideration the achieved results in the dissemination activities regarding the general public, professional public as well as the professors and students at the home universities and the host ones during the multiplier events.

The presentation of the comparative research results will enable a very systematic exploration of gender relevant issues to a general and professional (in a wider sense) public, and to students and teachers. The brochure, to be published, will be distributed and analysed both in academia and at conferences which are part of this project, but also at many others in which the project participants will take part. Thanks to the fact that the survey will be done at five universities in five different countries, and that the comparative analysis will be published online and announced at the LLL Online platform, the transfer of the results will be huge. The associate partners of Belgrade University, especially the Centre for Democracy, will widely disseminate the results of this empirical survey. The dissemination of the results will be particularly conducted during the first multiplier event, planned to be held at Saarland University in Saarbrücken. However, the main source of transfer possibility comes from the standardised “tool form and content” of this empirical survey questionnaire. It will be usable at all other university centres, along with the statements on different dimensions of the gender equality issue of their professors and teachers.

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