Collaborative project: Re-Imagining GenderFuture in MINT - University potentials of attracting and retaining female non-traditionals by integrating sustainability and gender equity in engineering sciences



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Research field: gender and technology, social inequality, higher education, sustainability

Project duration: 3 years (03/2023 - 02/2026)

Project supervisor: BMBF


Project goal

May GreenMINT be a 'door opener' for attracting and retaining especially female STEM talents in society, who so far are still underrepresented especially in the field of engineering sciences despite numerous measures?
The fundamental goal of the GenderFUTURE joint project is to address young women in STEM as impulse generators and agents of change in higher education. Contrary to classical socialization-theoretical perspectives of analysis, the project aims at the 're-seeing' of young female talents in terms of innovation theory as well as the 're-seeing' of higher education development potentials and strategies in the discursive pull of 'Greening MINT'.
By means of higher education organizational case studies, the collaborative project investigates the interplay of imaginations, orientation patterns, and design strategies of young women in GreenTec (RWTH Aachen) with the higher education classically exclusionary orders of vision and innovation dynamics of GreenTec (Uni Marburg).

Research Object and Vision

A number of studies in this research field suggest that the new guiding principle of sustainability is helping to attract women to STEM/tech fields of study. In the discursive maelstrom of 'Greening MINT', young women in particular can be impulse generators and agents of change in higher education. In recent years, Greta Thunberg has become a global media 'role model' for young women and a 'newcomer-innovator' who powerfully dynamizes the political field and, together with Fridays for Future, further discursivizes sustainability. Particularly in the technical sciences, the new guiding principle of sustainability can contribute significantly to women's enthusiasm for (environmental) technical science courses of study and become effective here themselves with their creativity and creative ability.
The discourse dynamics between young women and universities in GreenTec will be explored empirically on the basis of two multi-method, triangulated and longitudinal process analyses. Subsequently, innovation labs will be used to explore the ways in which GreenTech students can contribute to the development of university potential in the context of technical sciences. The design-oriented research approach thus examines the opening up of higher education's orders of vision and the contribution of GreenTec students to a gender-just transformation of exclusionary orders of vision on the way to a sustainable society.

Collaboration partner:

  • Professorship for social, political and cultural conditions of education and upbringing under consideration of international aspects, University of Marburg (Subproject 2: Intervening in organizational orders of vision)


The collaborative project "Re-Imagining GenderFuture in MINT. University potentials for attracting and retaining female non-traditionals by integrating sustainability and gender justice in the technical sciences (GenderFUTURE)" is funded by the Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) under the funding codes 01FP22M05A and 01FP22M05B.