Irish researchers awarded €1.7 million for gender research

Posted: 1 March, 2019

The Irish Research Council and the Health Research Board have announced today funding for seven research projects addressing the issue of gender equality across a range of important topics, as part of the European Union GENDER-NET Plus programme.

The Irish Research Council was one of the 16 international partners across 13 countries that formed GENDER-NET Plus, in cooperation with the European Union. Partners worked together to create a transnational funding call that was specifically designed to welcome proposals for research that integrates gender in addressing urgent societal challenges. This resulted in 13 projects being awarded funding, seven of which have Irish university partners.

The allocation of €1.7 million awarded to Irish gender researchers began with an initial €600,000 contribution from the Irish Research Council. The Irish Research Council subsequently collaborated with the Health Research Board to raise additional funds. Once the agencies combined their funding, Ireland’s contribution almost doubled, maximising the number of high-calibre research projects that could be supported.

Commenting on the awards today, John Halligan TD, Minister of State for Training, Skills, Innovation, Research and Development, said: “The success of Irish researchers in this highly competitive funding call shows the expertise that we have in this critical area of research. Gender inequality still exists in many areas of our society. Research has an important role to play in ensuring we create evidence-based policy to bring about the change we want to see in this area.”  

Professor Jane Ohlmeyer, Chair of the Irish Research Council, said: “The Irish Research Council is committed to supporting gender equality and mainstreaming in research. Gender equality is a significant societal challenge, as highlighted by the UN Sustainable Development Goals. The integration of sex and gender analysis into research gives us new knowledge and insights, which is critical to research excellence.”

Professor Jane Grimson, Chair of the Health Research Board stated: “These projects are excellent examples of how research that includes sex or gender considerations can lead to more effective healthcare for both women and men. HRB will fund researchers working in two international teams investigating sex and gender differences: in the area of cancer immunotherapy, and prescribing medicines for older people.”

These Irish researchers will study a wide range of important topics, which include:

  • causes and effective policy responses to prevent violence against women migrants and refugees;
  • sex-related differences in immune responses contribute to cancer treatment;
  • the effect of gender on social exclusion and its consequences for health and wellbeing;
  • entrepreneurship, innovation and women’s success; and
  • the role of literature and cinema in shaping attitudes to masculinity and aging.

Ireland’s GENDER-NET Plus awardees are:

  • Professor John Crown (Dublin City University)
  • Dr Claire Edwards (University College Cork)
  • Professor Maura McAdam (Dublin City University)
  • Dr Denis O’Mahony (University College Cork)
  • Professor Niamh Reilly (National University of Ireland, Galway)
  • Dr Anthony Tracy (National University of Ireland, Galway)
  • Professor Kieran Walsh (National University of Ireland, Galway)

Further information on the successful projects is available at

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