Bridging the Gender Gap in STEM Higher Education through EU-LAC Bilateral Cooperation and the W-STEM Project
Year of Publication
Willy Brandt School
BILATERAL RELATIONS UE - LAC
The European Union and Latin America and the Caribbean (EU-LAC) bi-regional cooperation has been at the forefront of supporting programmes to close the gender gap in the Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) programmes in higher education. The Erasmus+ Programme’s Key Action 2 or the “Capacity-building in Higher Education” funds the W-STEM Project, which aims to improve the attraction, access, and guidance of women in STEM higher education in Latin America. Despite significant strides, the problem still persists. This policy brief presents the extent and causes of gender inequality in STEM higher education in the EU and LAC regions. Through a systematic review of literature and semi-structured interviews, the authors were able to establish the severity of the problem and draw from the immense experiences, perspectives, and visions of institutional stakeholders, students, and researchers from the EU-LAC regions. To further support the visions and goals of the W-STEM Project, the EU-LAC bi-regional cooperation is encouraged to support efforts toward ramping up enrollment figures, work with stakeholders to co-create projects that addresses gender stereotypes in the field, and advocate for and support the project’s extension and expansion in order to include more universities in the EU-LAC regions.