On 30 October 2018, the Czech Academy of Sciences hosted the 5th national conference on gender and science, this time titled Science As a Vocation. The conference was organized by the Centre for Gender and Science of the Institute of Sociology of Czech Academy of Sciences. We were honoured that Angela Saini, acclaimed science journalist and author of the book Inferior: How Science Got Women Wrong, accepted our invitation to deliver a keynote presentation.
Marcela Linková, head of the Centre for Gender and Science, opened the conference and welcomed Eva Zažímalová, President of the Czech Academy of Sciences. In her welcome speech Professor Zažímalová said that no law in the Czech Republic discriminates against women. “However, there are plenty of various rules and conditions, for example, the requirement of foreign mobility, which is difficult to meet for mothers with small children,” said Zažímalová. “The stereotype that women take care, men take charge is weaker and weaker with each generation, and yet, it still exists,” said Zažímalová. She added “there is no scientific proof that female brains differ from male”. That was an allusion to one of the topic of Saini’s book Inferior.
Researchers at the Centre for Gender and Science presented the results of a survey and a qualitative study conducted among Czech academics, about their work conditions, wellbeing and job satisfaction. This study was carried out within the framework of the project “Analysis of Barriers and Support Strategy for Equality in Science and Research”, funded by the EU Operational Programme Employment grant no. CZ.03.1.51/0.0/0.0/15_028/003571. In our summer newsletter 1/2018 we brought you the results of the quantitative research and promised to present the main findings of the qualitative research in our winter newsletter. Here they are – please see in the article here.