NOVA Gender Working Group

Submitted by: Elvira Fortunato (Vice-Rector for Research) and Sofia Miguel and Filipa Marques from the Scientific Strategy and Funding Unit, NOVA University Lisbon

- ongoing

NOVA Gender Working Group

The NOVA Gender Working Group was established in July 2021 with the aim of ensuring that all Schools are involved in GEP implementation and to guarantee that GE-related challenges faced by all Schools are taken into consideration. This is relevant to help mitigate or eliminate the everyday challenges that each NOVA School faces and to potentiate the cooperation between Schools.

COMPASS PERSPECTIVE – in what way(s) was the measure C O M P A S S?

O  the Working Group not only gives voice to the challenges that each School faces, but it is also open and transparent to the whole community of NOVA.

M - the Working Group uses an approach focused on inclusion and non-discrimination of all people and aims to create activities and initiatives for the whole NOVA community.

P - the Working Group will create procedures that last through time, from which the whole NOVA community will be involved.

A - the Working Group will create procedures that last through time, from which the whole NOVA community will be involved (Processual), and will develop efforts to respond to various challenges (punctual or recurrent) and support the development and implementation of new measures.

S - the Working Group will be responsible for creating the necessary tools for the NOVA community to flourish and to create synergies with internal and external stakeholders.


We involved two representatives from all NOVA Schools selected by the Deans (one female representative and one male representative), the NOVA-SPEAR team, the Rectoral team and the Board of Deans. Furthermore, we have the institutional support of several Offices, namely the Research Information Management Office, the International Development Office, the Human Resources Office, the Strategic Planning Office, and the NOVA Impact Office.
The external stakeholders that support us are the State Secretary for Citizenship and Equality, Rosa Monteiro, the Commission for Citizenship and Gender Equality (CIG), and the Portuguese Foundation for Science and Technology (FCT, IP), along with our peers from other National Higher Education Institutions.


What would you do the same/differently another time?
What have you learnt? 
Do you see relevance for this in other contexts?

We would establish this Working Group again and believe it can be applied in other contexts or institutions. This group creates a great environment to have different perspectives regarding NOVA’s GEP development (and to share them) and will be an asset for the future with the development and implementation of measures. Being a decentralised university, NOVA has to find a balance focused on the needs of each School. Moreover, it is also important not to forget that since NOVA Schools are different in dimension and dynamics, the challenges of some can be the opportunities of others and the good practices of some can be applied in others. This creates the perfect environment to embrace and overcome daily challenges. Every 3 months, or whenever appropriate and necessary, the NOVA Gender Working Group discusses the implementation progress of the proposed measures. The mission of this Working Group is to strengthen cooperation among the NOVA schools, to create a cohesive think-tank, and to develop a dynamic, sustainable and safe platform for the whole NOVA community. The example given by the Working Group can help others to thrive and help disseminate good practices.