Sex and Gender Dimensions in Your Research: Resources
Gender Equity is a key transversal theme in frontier research. As well as institutional measures towards ensuring equity in the research environment, consideration of sex and gender dimensions of the research content itself is now expected by major funding entities, per project proposal for the majority of fields.
This step towards equity in research content is most obvious in health research where evidence highlights the importance of stratifying medical data to ensure strategies are fit for purpose. But this also permeates many other fields of fundamental research where this is not so immediately obvious (e.g. genetics of cell lines, animal handler pheromones, gender bias in algorithm training, hormone-related effects on murine immune response, etc). As researchers, our responsibility to ensure a representative research foundation is what funders and society are calling to action.
Aims of this page:
- to raise awareness on how considering the way our research projects and standards are designed with regards to sex and gender can influence the quality and usefulness of the results
- to provide CF researchers with the tools to do so effectively (actively updated)
GUIDELINES AND EXAMPLES
Quick-check Study Checklist
Does your study design consider key points, ensuring its quality and meeting funder requirements?
Gendered Innovations Project
Headed by Londa Schiebinger, this project:
1) develops practical methods of sex, gender, and intersectional analysis for scientists and engineers;
2) provides case studies as concrete illustrations of how sex, gender and intersectional analysis leads to innovation.
3) highlights relevant new papers
Y Garcia-Sifuentes, DL Maney 2021 - Reporting and Misreporting of Sex Differences in the Biological Sciences
Thiele et al. 2020 - Personalized whole‐body models integrate metabolism, physiology, and the gut microbiome
Buch et al., 2019 - Benefits of a factorial design focusing on inclusion of female and male animals in one experiment
Prendergast et al., 2014 - Female mice liberated for inclusion in neuroscience and biomedical research
Sorge et al., 2015 - Different immune cells mediate mechanical pain hypersensitivity in male and female mice
Sorge et al., 2014 - Olfactory exposure to males, including men, causes stress and related analgesia in rodents
Nakahjima et al., 2014 - Oxytocin Modulates Female Sociosexual Behavior through a Specific Class of Prefrontal Cortical Interneurons
Pardue,M., & Wizemann, T. (Eds) (2001). Exploring the Biological Contributions toHuman Health: Does Sex Matter?
WORKSHOPS AND COURSES
CCU Workshop: Justifying Your Research Design: Sex and Gender Dimensions March 2021
Held in March 2021 and available to watch on our YouTube channel here, external expert Prof. Sabine Oertelt-Prigione offers advice on facilitating integration of sex and gender dimension analysis into your research design. To then apply these concepts, the workshop also includes in-house researchers’ experience (Fatima Cardoso, Clara Ferreira) on how their research in both humans and non-human animal models has benefited significantly from taking sex and/or gender into consideration.
Prof. Sabine Oertelt-Prigione is a physician, researcher and organizational consultant. Since 2017 she holds the chair of gender medicine at the Radboud University in Nijmegen, the Netherlands. The work conducted at her chair encompasses three areas: a) advocacy and promotion of gender medicine with colleagues,students and the broader public, b) implementation of gender medicine in clinical practice and research through co-operations with experts within clinical disciplines (e.g. cardiology, neurology, oncology) and c) research about gender inequity and discrimination within organizations and consultancy for its prevention.
ERC Workshop - Sex and Gender Dimensions in Frontier Research Nov 2020
A more comprehensive version of the workshop held at CCU and invites researchers from a wide range of fields to share success stories and challenges on integrating sex and gender dimensions into their research questions.
NIH E-learning - Various
Free courses available to the public (inc. Sex as a Biological Variable: A Primer; Bench to Bedside: Integrating Sex and Gender to Improve Human Health)
Internal contact points
If your queries are not answered by the above, please feel free to reach out to:
Laura Ward (CRSU) - general queries, suggestions for what you would like to see more of, link to Sabine Oertelt-Prigione
Clara Ferreira (Moita lab) - flies, behavioural neuroscience
Bill Podlaski (Machens lab) - modelling, computational neuroscience, artificial intelligence
Isabel Campos (Vivarium, ORBEA) - rodents, animal welfare
Constança Roquette (Ethics Committee contact) - human participants, clinical trials
Adriana Sánchez-Danés (ERA Chair) - mice, human cells, cancer
Sabine Oertelt-Prigione (ask Laura if you want to contact her)
- Study Design Flowchart
- Key funder-specific templates (where possible/existent)
- Institutional Gender Equality Plan
- ...Improvements based on your suggestions