Gender Mainstreaming: Theory and Practice ‒ Research and Teaching

RC19 (Gender Politics and Policy)

IPSA Pre-Congress Workshop on Gender Mainstreaming: Theory and Practice ‒ Research and Teaching

Saturday, July 23rd, 2016

Location: AMU Morasko Campus, University of Adam Mickiewicz, Poznan, Poland


Since the mid-1990s and the UN Conference in Beijing, gender mainstreaming has been hailed as the feminist strategy for bringing gender perspectives into the study and practice of public policy and politics in general, at both the domestic and international level. Scholarship has offered some success stories, at least in comparative terms, with gender mainstreaming being realized in a transformative manner and with gender issues being considered in a ‘politics as usual’, self-evident, and systematic fashion. However, problems and failures in the gender mainstreaming effort appear to be a much more common story.

So is gender mainstreaming still a valid goal and strategy for feminist politics? How can we assess its advantages and disadvantages after twenty years of practicing gender mainstreaming? Are there possibilities for ameliorating the methods and application of this strategy to offset the disadvantages, or is there still a desire to do so? If not, what can we replace it with? And what opportunities and challenges has the concept of intersectionality – and the related strategy of diversity mainstreaming – brought to GM?

More recently, gender mainstreaming has come to be regarded a crucial strategy for transforming research and teaching in the academic field of political ‘science’. How do we ourselves as academics “do” gender mainstreaming in our research activities, how do we work to ensure gendered research is claimed as core knowledge in the discipline, and how do we mediate knowledge in the class-room in order to achieve this goal? What are the experiences, good practices and insights, and actual barriers to doing this? Have we been successful in bringing feminist scholarship into the “mainstream”? And what lessons from our experience of GM in research and teaching resonate with the insights gained in studying GM as a strategy in politics and policy work?

This Pre-Congress Workshop organized by RC 19 brings together gender scholars to exchange information, ideas and viewpoints on the state of gender mainstreaming in the study of politics and public policy, as well as in the fields of research and teaching.

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