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Several Project Proposals Submitted in the Wake of MeToo

Increased gender equality between parents, in the workplace and among reindeer-herding Sami. These are the objectives of some of the nine projects granted funding from the Nordic Gender Equality Fund in 2018.

Last spring, the Nordic Gender Equality Fund accepted requests for funding of Nordic gender equality projects for a sixth straight year. Nine requests were granted.

A project titled Exporting Nordic Models of Fatherhood, Gender Egalitarianism and Parental Leave will explore how the Nordic model of parental insurance and so-called ‘daddy months’ has worked out in other countries that have experimented with it, such as Japan, Slovenia and Germany.

‘We know a great deal about how the parental insurance has been debated, changed and not least used in the Nordic countries, and we know that there is a widespread interest in Nordic family policy internationally. Now we want to study how it’s been received and how the concepts of male and female parenting have been discussed’, says Ann-Zofie Duvander, project leader and professor at the Stockholm University.

Another project will look into how the gender equality can be strengthened in isolated regions with limited job opportunities. Select areas of the Faroe Islands, Greenland and Denmark will be studied. A third project aims to increase the gender equality among reindeer-herding Sami:

‘Previous research has identified structures that cause gender disparity in traditional Sami reindeer-herding communities. It’s important to collect existing knowledge and create a holistic understanding of structural gender inequality and promote gender equality in the reindeer-herding communities. How do structures causing gender inequality interfere with or prevent women’s access to reindeer herding as a source of income, and how does this affect Sami women’s ability to enjoy their human rights?’, says Kamrul Hossain, project leader and professor at the University of Lapland in Finland.

The MeToo movement seems to have inspired many applications for funding.

‘The strong impact of the MeToo movement in the Nordic countries clearly seems to have affected the submission of funding requests this year. Many proposed projects have focused on sexual harassment. The granted projects include one dealing with what Nordic municipalities are doing to fight sexual harassment in the healthcare sector. This is an important topic, as sexual harassment is a big problem in this specific occupational domain,’ says Elin Engström, head of operations of Nordic Information on Gender (NIKK), which is the unit administering the Nordic Gender Equality Fund on behalf of Nordic Council of Ministers.

The Nordic Gender Equality Fund was launched by the Nordic gender equality ministers to stimulate research, initiatives and collaborations in the field of gender equality.

‘It’s great to see the tremendous diversity among the organisations that apply for funding. This year’s applicants include several universities, but also national emergency services and organisations specialising in family planning,’ says Engström.

Updated 20 November 2019