Center of Excellence Women and Science

© Pete Linforth /

About CEWS

CEWS Center of Excellence Women and Science aims to promote the implementation of gender equality in science and research in Germany. CEWS supports evidence-based learning about inequalities and gender equality policies in academia - to make research gender-sensitive, non-discriminatory and respectful, especially for women.

The unique selling point of CEWS is the coherent integration of research, networking, consulting and scientific service. For its target groups, CEWS represents the bridge between research and practice. CEWS contributes to improving the quality, effectiveness, and sustainability of gender equality policies and measures in science and research at the political and organizational levels, as well as at the level of knowledge production.

Collaborating internationally, CEWS implements national and European projects in the field of gender equality policy.

Since CEWS was founded in 2000, its services have been systematically developed in order to effectively fulfill the needs of key stakeholders such as researchers, gender equality professionals, science stakeholders and policy-makers.

Five areas of activity

CEWS provides comprehensive expertise in five areas of activity:

CEWS carries out impact and implementation studies on gender equality initiatives in academia. Studies and projects often combine research and service-oriented objectives with policy analysis and evaluation. CEWS' projects in this field of activity

  • evaluate implementations and impacts of gender equality initiatives;
  • assess how gender equality is taken into consideration in research funding programs;
  • analyze the implementation frameworks of gender equality measures and policies as well as those of scientific careers;
  • map and analyze gender equality policies in academia in the European Union member states;
  • analyze the potential of applying gender equality policy instruments in research.

This field of activity includes on the one hand reviewing, processing and analysis of current literature on gender inequalities in academia. On the other hand, it includes the implementation of quantitative as well as qualitative studies, mostly financed by public research funders.

CEWS initiates and accompanies discussions and opinion-shaping processes, e.g. for the development of European and national gender equality initiatives in science such as the German Program for Women Professors. Moreover, CEWS provides advice on the strategic orientations and the development of policies of the European Research Area (ERA) as well as for the European Research Framework programs (FP7, Horizon 2020) to advance gender equality in institutions and in funding.

CEWS connects networks through supporting and linking stakeholder groups at regional, national, European and international levels with scientific organizations, politics, state/federal ministries, European and national committees, researchers and networks. One focus area is the exchange between research and policy development.

CEWS' services, with a view to better understand gender inequalities and equality politics in academia, aim at putting accumulated research findings on gender and inequalities into policies and practices. Our main addressees are universities' equality professionals, academics and stakeholders in science, politics and society, as well as researchers. CEWS' services are mostly web-based and present a variety of examples, e.g. specialized online-databases on the CEWS portal or the electronic CEWSjournal with over 4,000 subscriptions.

CEWS prepares and provides data and information which give detailed insights into gender inequalities in academia as well as into output and impacts of gender equality policies. Although our focus lies on quantitative data, we also use qualitative data such as legal texts, gender equality plans, and similar documents. CEWS developed original methods e.g. to monitor and to rank academic institutions in Germany according to gender equality aspects as well as a retrospective prognostic tool for analyses of the vertical disaggregation. Activities in the field of statistics and monitoring connect to an international community, e.g. through participation in the European group "Statistical Correspondents on Women in Science".