The Shota Rustaveli National Science Foundation of Georgia (SRNSFG) is a Legal Entity of Public Law under the aegis of the Ministry of Education, Science, Culture and Sport of Georgia, which supports the development of Science, Technology and Innovation (STI) system in Georgia. Activities of Shota Rustaveli National Science Foundation of Georgia are directed to ensure rational spending of the state resources allocated to research funding in Georgia.
The Foundation aims to create a unified system of science funding and build society’s trust towards the system. SRNSFG maintains the monitoring of the state research grant beneficiaries (grant holders) and submits report to the Ministry of Education, Science, Culture and Sport of Georgia.
Status of gender inequalities
SRNSFG offers equal opportunities for employment and professional growth for its staff, regardless of the gender. However, relative discrepancy between the total number of female and male employees is also notable at the organization as 14 out of a total of 47 employees are male. Besides, the high managerial/administrative positions are relatively balanced as the Director General, Deputy Director General, Head of one department as well as the deputy head of another department are males. Relevant is the M/F ratio based on the statistics on the applications under the framework of the major big grant calls: Gender distribution of the Fundamental Research – FR (Basic Research) grant call 2018: 33 F and 47 M grant holders; Gender distribution of the Applied Research grant call 2018 (AR) – 46 F, 70 M applicants in total; Gender distribution of the Grant call for Young Scientists (YS) 2018 – 21 F, 12 M grant holders. According to the data of the submitted projects for evaluation in 2017 grant call for FR is totally balanced 50-50% (43 – 43) of the male and female Principal Investigators of the funded projects.
Existing gender equality policies at a faculty level
Even though SRNSFG does not have an active and well-developed GEP at the organizational level, there is an internal regulation in place ensuring equal opportunities for all employees, including the gender equality issue, however the statutory document of the foundation doesn’t specifically highlight such clause. Noteworthy, the foundation as the legal entity of public law, operates in accordance with Legal framework of the Government of Georgia. SRNSFG has not yet acquired internal expertise on gender topics and internal documents on the matter have not been processed though.
Shota Rustaveli National Science Foundation of Georgia considers gender equality issue as one of the key societal challenges in the modern world. Within the Caliper project SRNSFG sees the opportunity to provide gender equality inside the organization and the opportunity to implement structural changes in order to increase the number of female researchers in STEM, improve their careers prospects and integrate a gender dimension in research and innovation.