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Center of Excellence Women and Science


Study of the potential of international mobile women scientists

Project duration: 01.08.2020 - 31.12.2021

Project lead: Dr. Andrea Löther; Dr. Anke Lipinsky (substitute)

Processed by: Frederike Freund

Project description:

The study aims to explore the reasons for the low female participation among grants of the Humboldt-Foundation. The Foundation likes to receive impulses for action to attract more excellent women scientists to the Humboldt Network. To this end, the study combines a needs analysis with a deficit analysis: International experts will examine the potential for qualified female academics on the demand side and analyse the requirements for the international mobility of female academics and their needs. They will address the mobility culture and specific aspects of women scientists’ careers for 14 key countries, some of which will be analyzed in more detail. The analysis focuses – besides the context of the higher education and research system – on gendered participation in tertiary education and academic careers as well as gender and international mobility. This part of the study aims to know the potentials and needs of women scientists. For the deficit analysis on the supply side, gender-specific aspects of the Humboldt programs will be examined using three selected programmes as examples. The study focuses on the access to the programs. By combining the two parts of the study, the report will identify desired impulses for changes that the Foundation could initiate.

Materials / Activities:

Andrea Löther and Frederike Freund published the article „Potenzial nicht ausgeschöpft“ in the 09/2022 issue of the journal "Forschung & Lehre". The article is based on results of the study.

At the end of March 2022, CEWS published its final report of the potential analysis in the series cews.publik (analysis in German).

Further information and documents on the study are provided in German by the AvH Foundation, such as

The final report of the study was delivered on December 22, 2021.

The CEWS project staff presented the preliminary study results to the Humboldt Foundation's Evaluation Advisory Board on September 28, 2021.

On September 1, 2021, representatives of the AvH office and CEWS project staff discussed the interim report in an evaluation workshop. The results of this workshop will be incorporated into the preparation of the final report.

On June 22, 2021, international experts discussed initial project results in an evaluation workshop which was based on the country dossiers and evaluations of the program analysis (quantitative data, document analysis and interviews with the Humboldt Foundation's office and with host organizations). The workshop also developed a first set of recommendations for action.

Funded by:

Award No. 2020-128