Completed projects

Completed projects

One of the action lines of Observatory for Equality is to research about the situation of women and people with disabilities in our university. Since its creation, the Observatory has conducted three research projects funded by state and regional institutions, and has participated in a European project within the framework of the ALFA III programme.

Measures for Social Inclusion and Equality in Higher Education Institutions in Latin America. 2012-2014

The Observatory for Equality has participated in the project “Measures for the Social Inclusion and Equality in Higher Education Institutions of Latin America” (MISEAL, according to its initials in Spanish), a research project co-funded by the European Union within the framework of the ALFA III programme.

The project lead by the Freie Universität Berlin (Germany) had fifteen different partner universities form Latin America and Europe.
The main objective of MISEAL was to contribute to the improvement of strategies and access methods, conditions of stay and mobility for unprivileged or vulnerable groups of twelve state high schools in Latin America.

The specific contribution by the Observatory, in coordination with the University of Hull, England, was to develop a comprehensive system of evaluation and monitoring the actions done within the project’s framework.

The Observatory was also responsible of organising the final congress of MISEAL, “New challenges for social inclusion and equality in higher education.” A hundred and fifty people from different countries of Latin America and Europe delivered 42 lectures and created spaces for reflection around the intersectional paradigm in the analysis of inequalities and the development of policies and practices in higher education from a transnational perspective.

The MISEAL project has resulted, among others, in the establishment of a network for exchange and consultation between European and Latin American universities; and the creation of a transnational postgraduate programme, a database of experts, and a transnational Observatory for Equality.

Official website:

Perception of factors involved in the evolution of the academic career: a gender perspective

A RDI project funded by the Spanish Women’s Institute for a period of one year (2008-2009) that aimed to analyse the subjective and informal that determine the academic career of women professors at the Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona, in order to draft proposals for awareness-raising actions to remove sexism from our university.

The methods for achieving the previous goals are: on the one hand, to analyse the perceptions of the teaching staff towards different aspects relating to the access and promotion in the academic career by conducting surveys and in-depth interviews; on the other hand, to hold a meeting for experts, academic authorities, and teaching staff, so as to diagnose the factors involved in the academic career and to develop intervention measures

Care and provision: gender bias in internships and its impact in the socialising role of the university

RDI project funded by the Spanish Women’s Institute for a period of three years (2005-2008) that deals with sexism in the socialising processes that take place within the university. In particular, it deals with aspects such as the perception of university degrees and the design of abilities, skills, and attitudes attributed to the professionals, the dissemination of knowledge and socialising (content and relational processes), the characteristics of subjectivities at stake, and the results of these processes in terms of the impact on the student body. All these elements are analysed as possible distinctive factors in account of the sex and gender of the agents involved.

It also studies the correlation between sex and gender, and university degree and gender, since the profile of students from different degrees follows the same gender pattern. Within this context, ethics and the objectives of each activity are the gender indicators. Tendency towards care and justice ethics are considered to be characteristic of the feminine gender, that is, distribution regulations based on particular needs. As regards to the masculine gender, it is characterised for a higher tendency towards provision and justice ethics, target-oriented, without paying attention to the possible consequences for people and stressing the universal distribution regulations.

The fieldwork is based on a sample of university degrees chosen according to their gender orientation: Teaching (specialisation in Early Childhood Education) and Pedagogy as women’s careers, Labour Relations and Law, as non-gendered, and Computer Engineering as male’s careers. The above mentioned issues are studied from interviews to the teaching staff, the student body, the academic authorities, surveys, student discussion groups, and remarks on classroom interactions.

Diagnosis of trainee staff careers at UAB from a gender perspective

Research project funded by AGAUR for a period of one year (2007-2008) that aims at analysing the transition moments which can have special incidence in the access and stay in the academic career at UAB: the steps from undergraduate to trainee, and from trainee to accessing to the university teaching staff. Labour conditions of the trainees are also heeded, given the variety of grants awarded and the consequent implications: different requirements, pays, and social benefits.

General indicators confirm that the presence of women diminishes as the hierarchical scale rises. From the analysis of certain elements, such as deciding to apply for a grant, the labour conditions, the tasks performed, or future expectations once the grant ends, there is evidence that an explanatory factor for the diminished presence of women is sexism when setting the preferences after graduation. Once awarded the grant, there is an inequitable distribution regarding the types of grants: men choose grants targeted to an academic career (pre-doctoral), while women mostly opt for research support grants, exclusively aimed at research and project management.

Moreover, the study seems to indicate that trainee positions encourage a different order of career choices, and stimulates scientific vocation more frequently among men trainees than among women.