Gender Gaps in Employment and Enterprise

Work Package 4 overarching goal is to delve into the persistent gender gaps in employment and enterprise, as well as the resistance to EU gender equality laws, utilising a Transformative Equality Approach. In collaboration with stakeholders, our specific objectives include unravelling the complexities behind these gaps and co-creating innovative solutions to eliminate them in both European and African labour markets. Work Package 4 (WP4) focuses on sectors such as finance and enterprise, health, and sustainability and innovation, where existing research has identified gender gaps. Through a multidisciplinary approach, combining law, public management, sociology, economics and finance, we aim to understand not only the explicit rules but also the implicit messages that contribute to these gaps at institutional, symbolical, and experiential levels. Our ultimate aim is to provide practical tools and training kits derived from theoretical insights and better practices, facilitating governments and organisations to identify areas for improvement and drive tangible change in the short, medium, and long term. In WP4, there are five deliverables:
D4.1 – Toolkit on Gender Gap in Representation at Work

The first deliverable (D4.1) and the literature research that supported it were completed between April 2023 and January 2024. This toolkit provides guidelines and shares better practices with companies on how to improve women’s representation in their organisations.

D4.2 – Best Practice Map on Addressing the Gender Pay Gap

This task involves checking how well companies in partner countries follow the rules about equal pay. We’ll look closely at the systems and rules they have in place to make sure men and women get fair pay for the same job. This includes checking their policies and practices to see if they have ways to find and fix any gender pay gaps. We’ll look at how they hire people, how they keep track of pay, and if they do internal checks on pay. We’ll also see how decisions about pay are made, like in hiring or promotions, and if there are ways to double-check those decisions. The information we gather will help create a Best Practice Map that advises on good ways for companies to handle pay and stay in line with the new rules about pay transparency.

D4.3 – Best Practice Map Addressing the Gender Gap in Work Family Roles

Most of the studies about balancing work and family life have mainly looked at the differences between men and women, especially since taking care of children is considered part of the non-work side of life. The research shows that women often face more challenges trying to manage both work and family responsibilities because of their role in caring for dependent children. The problem arises when there isn’t enough time to fulfil duties both at work and at home. The line between work and personal life has become more blurred, involving tasks like multitasking between work, family, and personal activities. This has become even more noticeable during the pandemic. Studies before the pandemic found that working from home created more conflicts for women in balancing work and non-work roles. The pandemic increased stress and work-life conflicts for women, especially mothers who had to juggle home-schooling, childcare, and work. This task involves looking at what we currently know from scientific studies about how people handle work and family roles in organisations. We’ll also explore ways organisations can make positive changes in policies and the messages they send, working together with managers to make improvements.

D4.4 – Policy Report Assessing Gender Inequality in the Financial Sector

A big challenge for women who want to start or grow their businesses is not having enough money. This financial obstacle holds back many female entrepreneurs. Gender inequality in access to finance widens the global representation gap of female entrepreneurs. This inequality leads to economic problems because it results in the inefficient use of financial and human resources. To tackle this issue, we’ll look at existing data to see if there are gender differences in how women and men get bank loans in different countries, and interview bank managers to find out more about the reasons behind banks’ lending relationships with female entrepreneurs.

D4.5 – Workshops and Podcasts on Better Practices in Protection from Sexual Harassment in The Workplace

Sexual harassment can range from offensive comments to physical assault. To prevent this in the workplace, it’s important to have clear policies against it. Everyone should know and understand these policies, and sexual harassment should be treated as a health and safety issue. It’s crucial to monitor how well these policies are put into practice and to have procedures for dealing with complaints, both informally and formally. It’s also important for organisations to be aware of the laws related to sexual harassment and their responsibility in preventing it. Despite efforts, many women still face various forms of harassment. This task will look into how organisations handle sexual harassment. We’ll use existing data and conduct new research by talking to managers as well as employees to find better ways for organisations to address and prevent sexual harassment.