GESIS Leibniz Institute for the Social Sciences: Go to homepage
Center of Excellence Women and Science

Gender Bias In Science And Research

Approaches To Reducing Gender Bias

Implicit bias can be reduced and avoided at various levels and through various measures: The support of the management level of an organization is necessary in order to recognize and anchor the topic as a task and challenge for the entire organization. In addition, structural measures are needed at various levels, which must be accompanied by constant monitoring. These measures should be supplemented by anti-bias training.

Strategies and methods for the reduction and avoidance of bias are presented in the following papers:

In addition to these detailed handouts for the scientific field, the German platform Anti-Bias and the ‘Chefsache’ Initiative also present measures to reduce bias in the selection of personnel in companies.

In “Reducing Gender Biases In Modern Workplaces: A Small Wins Approach to Organizational Change” (2017), Correll presents in detail those studies that investigate the effectiveness of training and formalized organizational processes for reducing bias.

Studies on the successes of trainings display different results. Guglielmi (2018) reveals in her study “Gender bias goes away when grant reviewers focus on the science” that training reviewers to recognize unconscious biases seems to correct this imbalance. Anti-bias language in the student evaluation for teaching can reduce gender bias, as Peterson et al. (2019) show in their study “Mitigating gender bias in student evaluations of teaching”.

When recruiting personnel at universities, bias is proven in performance evaluations and in interviews. In order to identify and reduce these, institutes and initiatives have published numerous videos (see also the page video material) as well as manuals and checklists.

The following materials can be downloaded and provide further information as well as action strategies which address executives and members of search committees. The materials are meant to be short in order to facilitate their use in professional practice.

On the video material page (see “Introduction”), you will also find an overview of the specific questions that need to be addressed in the field of science and research in order to identify and reduce bias.