Center of Excellence Women and Science


Gender-based violence and institutional responses: Building a knowledge base and operational tools to make universities and research organizations safe 

Project duration: 01.02.2021 - 31.01.2024

Project lead: Dr. Anke Lipinsky

Project description:

UniSAFE is a nine-partner EU funded project that aims to produce better knowledge on gender-based violence (GBV) in research performing and funding organizations, and to translate this knowledge into operational tools for higher education, research organizations and policymakers. It examines the mechanisms of GBV, its social determinants, antecedents and consequences, by developing an ambitious multi-level research design and holistic 7P research model, covering Prevalence, Prevention, Protection, Prosecution, Provision of services, Partnerships and Policy. The state-of-the-art 7P model will be used to collect comprehensive data, analyze their relations, synthesise and compare qualitative and quantitative evidence gathered at three levels:

  • Prevalence and impacts of GBV are analyzed via data gathered by a survey sampling 45 research organizations (N450 000) and by a Europe-wide survey of mobile researchers (micro level).
  • Organizational responses and infrastructure are analyzed via data gathered by in-depth case studies, interviews, and a strategic mapping in of research organizations in 15 member states (meso level).
  • Legal and policy frameworks are analyzed via extensive mapping by national experts in EU27 and 3 Associated States (macro level).

UniSAFE is designed to achieve its results through research, education and outreach activities between researchers, stakeholders and policymakers across Europe. As a result of the multi-field design, the project will provide in-depth knowledge of existing problems on the one hand, and current and future priorities on the other.

In particular, the outcomes will include:

  • A better understanding of GBV in European universities and research organizations and its impact on people, organizations and society.
  • Effective policies and measures implemented at universities and research organizations.
  • Increased capacity of students and staff to address GBV.
  • Tools and recommendations to reduce GBV violence in academic environments and research workplaces in Europe.

UniSAFE relies on a strong multi-disciplinary consortium of nine European partners. The strength of the consortium is based on the partners’ in-depth knowledge and extensive collaborative track record on researching GBV, transforming academic insights into operational tools, including the lead on the GEAR-tool, and knowledge dissemination, including a direct link to the Gender Equality Academy.

The 3-year project supports the European Commission’s objective of ending GBV in Europe by contributing to the reduction and eventual eradication of gender-based violence in European higher education.

Project partners: 

European Science Foundation, France

Örebro Universitet, Sweden

GESIS - Leibniz Institute for the Social Sciences, Germany

Yellow Window, Belgium

Institute of Sociology, Czech Academy of Sciences, Czech Republic

Universidad Computense Madrid, Spain

Lithuanian Social Research Centre, Lithuania

Jagiellonian University in Krakow, Poland

Oxford Brookes University, UK

Funded by: EU, Horizon 2020

Grant agreement: No 101006261