Sunday, November 23, 2008

IDRC Call for Proposals: Gender and Innovation

Deadline: 19 Dec 2008
Informasi lengkap di:

Call for Proposals: Gender and Innovation


The changing agency of women is one of the major mediators of economic
and social change, and its determination as well as consequences
closely relate to many of the central features of the development
process — Amartya Sen

The Innovation, Technology and Society (ITS) program of IDRC supports
research towards strengthening innovation capabilities and innovation
systems in developing countries. The actors in an innovation system,
the science and technology policy environment and the interface of
innovation systems with society are the three thematic focus areas of
ITS. For more information consult Gender is an
important dimension in all of the thematic areas but there are visible
knowledge gaps pertaining to the influence and impacts of gender in
innovation systems and processes. We do know that women are present
in knowledge and skills- based enterprises but we know very little
about how they influence innovation processes leading to tangible
socio-economic outcomes. Similarly, the impacts of current innovation
systems on the lives of women are not well understood. If knowledge
is to be used as a strategic resource for economic growth and
productivity as recognized by the development community, women must be
provided with an enabling environment to be equal partners in the
national innovation systems

There is a rich source of literature on the fragile representation of
women in science and technology based institutions and enterprises and
is being addressed at various levels. Adequate representation of women
in S&T systems is a necessary but not a sufficient condition for
favourable socioeconomic outcomes. Moreover, the S&T system is a
component of the national system of innovation. Given that innovation
is a complex process, sometimes an S&T system is not even necessary
for innovation. There is evidence of innovation without S&T and a lot
of evidence of S&T without leading to innovation. An innovation system
encompasses the knowledge intensive interactions among the innovation
system actors to turn an idea into a process, product or service on
the market. It is from this broad perspective of innovation and
innovation systems that the gender dimension needs to be analysed.
Furthermore, from an inclusion and efficiency perspective, there is a
need to tap into under utilised skills and the social value of a
participatory innovation process.

This call aims to examine gender from a wider perspective of
innovation systems in developing countries. It will support research
towards understanding impediments to innovation processes being
influenced by women, opportunities to promote greater involvement and
influence by women and the differential impacts (real and perceived)
of existing innovation systems on women. Proposals are invited in the
form of concept notes following the template available at outlining the research under any of
the following two headings:

access, participation and contribution by women to the innovation
processes in general is of interest here, including their role in the
transformation of knowledge or use of new knowledge for generating
goods and services. For example, ways in which women contribute to
social and economic value, policy analysis of gendered access and
participation and organisational paradigms within innovation system
actors, gender influence on business enterprises are an indication of
ideas under this heading. Proposals may focus on the inclusivity of
women in decision making processes and governance of technologies,
particularly in regard to technologies impacting women. Proposals
could also address these or other questions:

o In what ways will greater engagement of women in a
specific context of innovation contribute to economic / social value?
o Will higher enrolment of women in technical education and
employment fill the gender gap in innovation?
o What are the key / distinct features of
technology-business entrepreneurship for and by women
o How does the agency of women in business enterprises
manifest itself in the innovation process?
o What socio-economic profiles of women enable their
influence on technology governance and policy process
o Does a higher gender balance trigger more innovation and
if so what are the impacts of this higher balance on innovation?

engagement of Science, Technology and Innovation (STI) policy and
governance in developing countries tend to be limited and a primary
reason for this is lack of adequate evidence and research on potential
and real socio economic impacts of STI policy or decisions of
innovation system actors. Research under this theme will consider
impacts (potential and real) of specific technologies (such as
reproductive technologies, domestic fuel or food processing
technologies) on women and their socio-cultural transformation caused
by these technologies. Research under this theme could address these
or other questions:

o Guiding principles (from a research based study) for an
engendered approach to technology regulation and policy
o In what ways do current technologies for water and
sanitation impact women?
o Are there gender biases in the diffusion and / or impacts
of specific technologies, such as biotechnology, nanotechnology and ICTs?
o What are the opportunities for policy harmonisation to
enable women to contribute to innovation processes?
o Does the knowledge economy and technological development
promote greater knowledge and skills development of women?


Innovation: Innovation is defined as the use of new ideas,
technologies or ways of doing things, in a place (or by people) where
they have not been used before.

The concept of the innovation system stresses that the flow of
technology and information among people, enterprises and institutions
is key to an innovative process. It contains the interaction between
the actors who are needed in order to turn an idea into a process,
product or service on the market.

Gender for the purpose of this call refers to women in the context
of their representation in the research data

Selection process

* Concept notes will be reviewed by IDRC and applicants of
selected concept notes will be invited to submit a full proposal
* Up to 9 full proposals will be supported up to CAD $ 50,000 each
for a maximum project duration of 2 years.
* Evaluation criteria for concept notes will include relevance to
context, quality and feasibility, potential for impact and merit of
the research team. Selection will also be based on a regional
geographic distribution


Ann Elizabeth Samson,
Gender and Science, Technology, and Innovation

Claire Buré
Gender in/and Science, Technology and Innovation Policy: An
overview of current literature and findings

Sujatha Byravan,
Gender and Innovation in South Asia

Guidelines for application:

* This call for proposals is limited to developing country
* The lead researcher and key members of the research team should
be citizens or residents of a developing country.
* Applicants are strongly encouraged to read the background papers
available at
* This call is limited to applied research projects only with a
strong evidence of relevance to local, national or regional context
* The format for submitting concept notes is available at
* Deadline for submission of concept notes is 19 December 2008
* Applications may be emailed to
* Incomplete applications, or fully theoretical research
applications will not be considered

Enquiries and clarifications may be addressed to


Launch of call inviting concept notes 15
September 2008
Deadline for receipt of concept notes 19
December 2008
Selection for full proposal development 9
February 2009

* Backgroun Papers


Application Form: Gender and innovation call 2008-09
Open file

Poster 2008-09-16
Open file