Take part in a study on the presence of unsuitable sexual behaviour in the Czech academic environment

Graphics: Žurnál UP
Friday 27 October 2023, 12:00 – Text: Gabriela Sýkorová Dvorníková

The research is aimed at gender-based violence, including sexual harassment; it is the first extensive research of its kind in the Czech academic environment and is being conducted now by the National Contact Centre for Gender & Science of the Institute of Sociology, Czech Academy of Sciences [Národní kontaktní centrum – gender a věda Sociologického ústavu Akademie věd ČR (AV ČR)]. The research will take place at public universities and Academy of Science institutes, and at Palacký University to 30 November.

“The latest data on gender-based violence including sexual harassment is from 2009. So at present, we do not have relevant data with which it would be possible to gauge its extent. The situation in recent years, however, indicates that it is a serious phenomenon in the Czech academic environment to which there is growing attention paid by student associations and initiatives,” said Marcela Linková from the Institute of Sociology of the Czech Academy of Sciences.

The research is intended for Czech and international students and employees, including non-academic personnel. “The participation of all of the above is important, whether they have had experience with gender-based violence and/or sexual harassment at their institution, or not. Every response counts,” Linková explained.

Palacký University is very much concerned about the theme of gender-based violence and sexual harassment. “So far there has not been such a focussed and at the same time such an in-depth study done at UP, on the basis of which we would be able to identify negative occurrences and their frequency. Without this knowledge, we are not able to develop responsible procedures to resolve gender-based violence and sexual harassment and to make efforts to improve the study and work environments,” said the Head of Human Resources, Markéta Šupplerová, emphasising that it is important even for those who think the research does not apply to them to take part in it. “Every response is relevant to pinpoint the situation at our university,” she said, adding that the results of the research, outlining the presence and impact of violence and harassment of individual groups of students and workers, will be a relevant foundation and argument for further steps by UP in this area.

Filling in the anonymous on-line questionnaire should take roughly 20–40 minutes, based on one’s experience(s). “We are conscious of the sensitive nature of this research, and the responses are thus completely anonymous and will be gathered and saved in such that way that they cannot be attached to the specific person who responded. Only the research team will have access to the data and that data will not be shared with anyone,” Linková insisted. Detailed information on the safety of the supplied information and data processing can be found on the website’s FAQ and also directly within the questionnaire.

Other details on the Prevalence study of gender-based violence in public higher education institutions and institutes of the Czech Academy of Sciences can be found on the website at genderaveda.cz. Questions and queries can be sent via e-mail to gpn@soc.cas.cz.


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