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Research and innovation

EU Award for Gender Equality Champions

In 2022, the European Commission launched a new prize recognising academic and research organisations driving the change towards gender equality in research and innovation.

First edition in 2022

This new award is the European Commission's initiative to recognise and celebrate the outstanding results achieved in the implementation of gender equality plans by academic and research organisations.

The winners were announced on International Women’s Day, 8 March 2023, by Mariya Gabriel, Commissioner for Innovation, Research, Culture, Education and Youth, in an Award Ceremony facilitated by Peter Dröll, Director for Prosperity in DG Research and Innovation.

Award ceremony

Winners per category

For this 2022 edition, there were four winning academic institutions. Two winners were rewarded in the Sustainable Gender Equality Champions prize category, one in the Newcomer Gender Equality Champions prize category, and another one in the Inclusive Gender Equality Champions prize category.

Each winner received €100,000.

Sustainable Gender Equality Champions

Organisations that demonstrated a significant and sustained record of activity and a high level of achievement through the implementation of their Gender Equality Plan.

Trinity College Dublin, from Ireland, was rewarded as Sustainable Gender Equality Champions.

Karolinska Institutet, from Sweden, was rewarded as Sustainable Gender Equality Champions.

Newcomer Gender Equality Champions

Organisations that had recently started implementing a Gender Equality Plan and can demonstrate the most progress in its implementation and achieved results.

This year, Maynooth University, from Ireland, was rewarded as a Newcomer Gender Equality Champion.

Inclusive Gender Equality Champions

Organisations that had developed the most innovative inclusive Gender Equality Plan addressing intersections with other social categories such as ethnicity, social origin, sexual orientation and gender identity (LGBTI+) or disability.

South East Technological University, from Ireland, was rewarded as an Inclusive Gender Equality Champion.

Why there is a prize

The EU Award for Gender Equality Champions aims to

The prize also intends to raise public awareness of the importance of addressing gender equality in academic and research organisations through institutional change and incentivise a high degree of commitment to implementing inclusive gender equality plans.

The prize will create a community of champions which can inspire other academic and research organisations to become gender equality champions themselves.

Designed by the European Commission (DG Research and Innovation), the prize is managed by the European Research Executive Agency (REA) and its winners are selected by an independent expert jury for each prize category.

Horizon Europe Widening Participation and Strengthening the European Research Area (WIDERA) Work Programme 2021-2022 featuring the new prize (p. 154 of 176).

Application criteria

The prize is open to universities, higher education institutions, and research performing organisations (public or private) established in an EU country or a Horizon Europe Associated Country.

Applicants could only apply to 1 of these 3 categories.

Rules of contest

Admissibility, Eligibility and Award criteria are detailed in the Rules of Contest, to be read by all applicants before submitting their application.

Rules of contest


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