At BIRA-IASB, we want to promote awareness of diversity and encourage measures to make all of us feel comfortable with and respectful of diversity of all kinds.
In response to recent European and Federal rules, BIRA-IASB published a Gender Equality Plan (GEP) with an action plan addressing aspects of work-life balance, leadership, career progression, research and teaching, and possible gender-based violences internally.
In 2022, 29% of the institute's staff are women (= 50 out of 172 collaborators). This gender ratio at BIRA-IASB hardly changed over the last decade, but is commensurate with the fact that we recruit mainly STEM scientists (people with a PhD in natural sciences, engineering or IT) i.e., a population in which the gender balance is of this same order. STEM scientists, and especially IT experts, are still predominantly men.
While there is a net increase in male scientific staff by 8 compared to 2020, there is no net increase in female scientific staff. We hired quite some female scientists, but we avoid positive discrimination in any sense: our main selection criterion is 'best fit' for the job. Note also that the technical staff includes the exclusively female cleaning personnel (3 persons).
When trying to promote gender equality, it is important to look at the position of women in leadership positions. At the end of 2022, across the different levels of the hierarchy in our institute, women hold 11.5 out of 31 leadership positions (or 37%). This is an important progression towards a better gender equilibrium at the leadership level compared to the 29% at the end of 2020.