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Forum for gender research in computer science and natural science

Gender research in the technical and natural sciences has developed its own analytic categories (Women in Science and Technology, Science and Technology of Gender, Gender in Science and Technology), in order to deal with the specific questions of their disciplines. With a strong and competent disciplinary background, we seek to encourage dialogues between the natural and cultural sciences and to even out the disparities found in sex and gender discourses.



Main Focus

The research areas of [gin] focus on three main topics:

For more information:

Gender Research at the Interface

From our background in gender research, we conceive the technical and natural sciences - as well as all other scientific disciplines – as being part of a continuously changing process of cultural constructions. Gendering is implemented into theories, methods and applications of scientific enterprises.

Future technologies and products of computer science currently interact closely with the natural sciences. Already today, biological analyses are strongly connected to computer science methods. In contrast, biological concepts influence modelling, algorithmic and product development in the computer sciences. These trends require particular attention in gender research, in order to deconstruct gender naturalism and gender determinism in these new technologies, as well as to prevent the rise of new forms of them.

We analyse dimensions of gendering in constructs within the technical and natural sciences. Through constructive application of our findings, we strive toward a de-gendering of CS-research and its product development, while also developing gender-sensitive IT-systems.

Curricular Institutionalisation

Our contributions to gender studies in computer science and natural science have been included in the plan of studies and the examination curricula of computer sciences. The lectures and seminars of our instructors, guest lecturers and staff members impart basic skills and further qualification in gender aspects to students working toward their Bachelor's, Master's or other scientific degrees in computer science. We also attempt to achieve the implementation of gender studies in the study course of Bio-Informatics and in the Department of Biology.

The Forum for Gender Research in Computer Science and Natural Science

The forum for gender research in computer science and natural science [gin] at the University of Freiburg offers workshops to women who are potential scientists and current students, who would like to include the relationship between gender and computer/natural science in theory and in practice. The Last Workshops

The Advancement of Young Scientists

Young female PhD students, who act as research assistants are well equipped with dual skills with respect to their scientific disciplines and gender research. For one week in September 2002, the Informatica Feminale took place at the University of Freiburg in co-operation with the network "Frauen.Innovation.Technik". For the first time, female students, scientists and employees from the field of CS and its interfaces had the opportunity to teach, learn, test and discuss new ideas with other women. Courses on programming languages, imperative as well as in graphical areas, programming techniques, CS-application, and lectures on CS-theory, artificial intelligence, CS-discourses had something to offer everyone.

Veronika Oechtering (SS 02) 
Bärbel Mauss (WS 02/03) 
Frances Grundy (WS 03/04) 
Funding Program of the State of Baden-Württemberg for the "Institutionalisation of Women's and Gender Studies at Colleges and Universities in Baden-Württemberg 
Schinzel, Britta; Schmitz, Sigrid; Grunau, Elisabeth; Messmer, Ruth (2002): Geschlechterforschung an den Grenzflächen der Informatik in: FIfF-ICO 03/02, S. 26-31