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09 Feb 2022

The Equality Committee of the IMB-CNM sets objectives and strategies after its first meetings

Following agreement at the Institute's Board meeting in November and a first team meeting in December, the Institute of Microelectronics of Barcelona's Equality Committee is now up and running. The priorities are to analyze the situation of the center, identify problems and improve training in equality for all staff.

Primera formación del Comité de Igualdad (dic. 21)


The committee is an action of the new Management of the center to carry out actions that promote equality in the institute. The IMB-CNM Equality Committee was constituted in November 2021 and the first meeting served to assign responsibilities and configure a roadmap of actions. Its priorities are to analyze the center's situation, identify problems and promote the training and dissemination of information on equality for all its staff.

The objectives are to disseminate and promote knowledge of the CSIC's equality policies, publicize institutional activities and decisions on equality policies, serve as a channel for any proposals or suggestions that staff might make on the subject, carry out a diagnosis of the situation in terms of equality or promote the inclusion of sex/gender in research and innovation.

The team is made up of two representatives of the different groups of the house (research, technical, administrative and predoctoral staff) with a parity composition. The renewal is assumed to be annual and the first formation is composed of the following people: Mar Álvarez, Carles Cané, Roger Escudé, Eduard Figueras, Gemma Gabriel, Jennifer García, Denise Marrero, Sabela Rey, Emma Solà and Carles Tortosa. Mar Álvarez participates as vice-director and Eduard Figueras as a member representing the staff. Gemma Gabriel has been appointed president and contact person for CSIC, while Roger Escudé has assumed the role of secretary.

Where IMB-CNM stands in equality

The IMB-CNM is an institute that, by its nature, welcomes people trained in a broad spectrum of STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) disciplines, from engineering to medicine. Female STEM graduates account for 40% of the total, although this figure drops to 15% in engineering degrees. At IMB-CNM, the number of female researchers corresponds to one third of the research staff, while in the center as a whole only 35% of the staff are women. The number of women pursuing doctoral degrees accounts for half of the men pursuing it in recent years. On the other hand, areas such as administration have no men on the team.

At the time of the creation of the committee, there is only one female group leader researcher (Rosa Villa) among the nine research groups that make the IMB-CNM. Furthermore, in terms of leadership of awarded projects, only 30% of the PIs (principal investigators) are women (according to 2020 data). The institute reproduces the "scissors" graph of the evolution of the scientific career of women and men in the CSIC, where the number of women decreases as one moves up the career ladder.

One of the first objectives of the Equality Committee is to make a detailed analysis of the situation to locate the causes and propose measures to improve these numbers.

CSIC's institutional commitment to equality

The creation of the committee is in line with the commitment of the institutes, centers and research units of the National Spanish Research Council (CSIC) to the creation and consolidation of Equality Committees that reinforce advances in gender equality. 54% of CSIC centers already have working groups of this type.

In addition, CSIC has the Women and Science Commission (CMyC), created in 2002, and the Delegate Commission for Equality, in 2011. The organization has implemented in the last decades many equality plans, creating in 2013 the I CSIC Gender Equality Plan. Currently, the CSIC is developing the III Equality Plan.