Gender and Railway Research in The Spanish Railways Foundation
Author/s: Ángeles Táuler
This article explores the question of gender within the field of R+D+i and specifically its relationship to research, development and technology within the Spanish Railways Foundation (FFE). It starts by presenting the wider societal and strategic context of women’s role and position within the public and private R+D+i sector, highlighting that despite strategic efforts nationally and at a European level, an unequal gender balance in favour of men persists within the sector and particularly at the senior decision making level.
This gender disparity is not reflected to the same degree in the FFE however, where female researchers represent 54% of the entire research team and have been making a strong contribution to its research, development and technology for the last 25 years. The significance and value of this gender ratio is also qualitative, particularly in terms of the “imprint” or perspective of gender which is embedded in the team due to the strong presence female researchers. This gender “imprint” adds value to the research, development and technology work of the Foundation, in so far as it supports the development of a railway industry in line with the needs of both male and female service users and through its participation in projects such as the “Technological Platform for Spanish Railways” (PTFE), the development of equal opportunities with the field of R+D+i.
Keywords: Research, gender, women, railways.
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