This project has received funding from the European Union's Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under grant agreement No 788204.

2nd ACT International Synergy Conference

2nd ACT International Synergy Conference

11 – 12 February 2021

Virtual Conference on Zoom platform





The purpose of this conference is to report on the contribution of the H2020 ACT project to advance gender equality in research and innovation in the EU. The approach developed by ACT is based on the concept of Community of Practice (CoP). ACT created, developed and supported eight CoPs, as well as a range of tools to help CoPs operate at institutional, inter-institutional, and EU-wide levels, and keep advancing best practice for gender equality in R&I.

The ACT Consortium invites to the Conference science and innovation leaders, decision-makers, researchers and practitioners ready to collaborate, co-create and co-produce gender equality in R&I.

Originally, the conference was to be hosted by the Jagiellonian University in Krakow.

A highlights summary report of 2nd International Synergy Conference has been published here.


DAY 1, 11 February 2021 (all times are in Brussels time)



9:00 – 9:05 Opening the Conference: Jörg Müller (UOC - ACT Coordinator)

9:05 – 9:15 Welcome from the virtual host: Prof. dr hab. Piotr Kuśtrowski, Vice-rector for Research, Jagiellonian University

9:15 – 9:45 Gender Equality in R&I in the EU, Mina Stareva, Head of Unit, Directorate-General for Research and Innovation (DG RTD) of the European Commission

9:45 – 10:30 Overview: The evolving use CoPs in science knowledge making

Round table. Chair: Ola Thomson (Loughborough University)

o    CoP and Citizen Science - Uta Wehn (H2020 WeObserve project)  View presentation
o    Overview of European Commission's CoPs - Coralia Catana + Susanne Szkola (DG JRC)  View presentation
o    CoP and HE institutions - Daniela Bultoc (HE CoP Expert)  View presentation
o    CoP for Gender Equality and Institutional Change in R&I across Europe - Jörg Müller (H2020 ACT Project)  View presentation

10:30 – 11:00 BREAK

11:00 – 11:45 Sharing experiences of the 8 ACT CoPs: Roundtable 1

Chair: Maria Caprile (NOTUS)

o    LifeSciCoP. Gender Equality in Life Sciences

o    GENERA. Gender Equality in Physics

o    GenBUDGET. Gender Budgeting in Research Organisations

o    FORGEN. Funding organisations for Gender

11:45 – 12:00 BREAK

12:00 – 12:45 Sharing experiences of the 8 ACT CoPs: Roundtable 2

Chair: Maria Caprile (NOTUS)

o    Strategies. Strategies for Sustainable Gender Equality

o    Alt+G. Alternative Infrastructure for Gender Equality

o    GEinCEE. Gender Equality in Central and Eastern Europe

o    LAC CoP. Gender Equality in Latin America

12:45 – 13:00 BREAK

13:00 – 13:20 Results of the evaluation of CoP development and performance - Sybille Reidl (JOANNEUM Reasearch) View presentation

13:20 – 14:00 BREAK

14:00 – 14:50 Sharing ACT tools and services

Chair: Thomas Berghoefer (DESY)

•    Setting up, developing and supporting the eight ACT CoPs - Sonja Reiland (CRG) + Rachel Palmén (UOC)  View presentation
•    Developing and first results from the Gender Equality Audit & Monitoring tool (GEAM) -  Kevin Guyan (AdvanceHE)  View presentation
•    Co-creation Toolkit - Kathrin Rabsch (Technical Uni. of Berlin)  View presentation Facilitator Training – Ola Thomson (Loughborough Uni)  View presentation
•    The Knowledge Sharing Platform - Sergi Yanes (UOC)  View presentation

Open discussion: users’ feedback and perspectives on support

On-line poll: vote for the service of most interest to you

14:50 – 15:00 BREAK

15:00 – 16:00 Scaling up CoPs for systemic change (moderated live session in a virtual format)

Chair: Claartje Vinkenburg (Portia)

o    ERA Group on Careers – Claartje Vinkenburg (Portia)
o    ERA Group on Decision Making – Rachel Palmén (NOTUS) 
o    ERA Group on Gender Dimension – Karolina Kublickiene (Karolinska Institute) 

Reflections from advisory board members, external experts and CoP members on matching between and scaling up CoPs: Collaborating, co-operating and co-creating.


DAY 2, 12 February 2021 (all times in Brussels time)



10:00 – 13:00 CoPs as means to better practice, culture, and performance in R&I organisations.

10:00 – 10:30 PLENARY A

Chair: Jovana Mihajlovic Trbovc (Research Centre of the Slovenian Academy of Sciences and Arts - ZRC-SAZU)  
Key lessons for how to create, develop, support and create value for members.

o    How could CoPs facilitate structural change
o    How can CoPs promote change in organisational cultures
o    How to ensure effective operation of a CoP
o    How to support participation in a CoP

Comments from ACT (Jörg Müller), WeObserve (Uta Wehn), JRC (Colaria Catana) and HE CoP Expert (Daniela Bultoc) + Q&A (10')


Each session will consider 4 questions and agree on 2 recommendations to report on Plenary B

      1. How can CoPs help institutions achieve structural change?
      2. How can CoPs help change cultures?
      3. What is needed to support functioning of CoPs?
      4. How to measure effectiveness of CoPs?

Each session will be moderate by ACT partner.

11:00 – 11:30 BREAK

11:30 – 12:30 PLENARY 2

Moving towards sustainable operational Communites of Practice model to improve quality of science knowledge making, application and communication.

Chair: Ana Hofman (Research Centre of the Slovenian Academy of Sciences and Arts - ZRC-SAZU)  

11:30 – 11:50 2-minutes reports from the 8 Breakout Sessions.

11:50 – 12:20 Round table: Strategies for CoP-led Transformational Change

o    Reflections for policy (Susanne Szkola - DG JRC) View presentation
o    Reflections for practitioners (Daniela Bultoc - HE CoP Expert)
o    Reflections for EU agencies and programmes (Uta When - IHE Delft Institute for Water Education)
o    Reflections for institutions (Jörg Müller - ACT)

12:20 – 12:30 Panel discussion (Moderator: Ana Hofman - ZRC-SAZU)


12:30 – 12:40 CLOSING the CONFERENCE: Jörg Müller (UOC, ACT Coordinator)


                                                                               Download the 2nd ACT International Synergy Conference programme  

                                                                                                            Be part of #ACTonGender!


This project has received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under grant agreement No 788204


11 Feb 2021
Virtual event