Here at the WTI, we are working to achieve and maintain long-term equality opportunities by committing to the University of Bern’s Strategy 2022.
Equal Opportunities at the WTI
Our commitment to equality
Know the GAP
In line with the University's strategy, we present our gender action plan (GAP). Please stay tuned on this site for updates!
We encourage you to visit the University of Bern's Facts and Figures page.
"Gender Equality in the Mirror (GEM): Clothing the Invisibility of Women at International Level" is WTI's main equality project. Check it out at https://www.womenandparticipation.org/
WTI “Know the GAP” Events
In early 2019, the WTI Gender Team established the Know the GAP Lecture Series. For 2022, the title is "Looking for Gender Parity".
These lectures are conceived as an innovative venue to bring accomplished scholars, leaders of international organizations, government, and the private sector, to the University of Bern. Throughout the year we will share the stories of inspirational women and the results of original research to make a concrete contribution to the progressive achievement of United Nations' Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 5 – Gender Equality.
Speakers will engage the public on numerous pressing gender issues and topics, including: gender history; gender equality and human rights; politics of gender and race in the Anthropocene; and gender equality and women’s empowerment.
For information about upcoming events at the WTI, please visit our Events page.
For information about upcoming Know the GAP events in 2022, please click on the first programme link to the right.
*All lectures will be available online as podcasts*
Have you missed one of our previous 'Talking Gender, Equality and Diversity' lecture? They are now available as podcasts:
Highly-educated and diligently cohesive? An analysis of Italian women MPs in the current legislature (26 April 2022)
by Dr Simona Guerra, SFHEA, Senior Lecturer in Comparative Politics at the University of Surrey, UK.
Gender and Climate Change: An Update from the Sixty-Sixth Session of the Commission on the Status of Women (CSW66) (29 March 2022)
by Prof. Elisa Fornalé, Swiss National Science Foundation Professor at the World Trade Institute, University of Bern; Adriana Quiñones, Director, UN Women Liaison Office in Geneva; Dr Mithika Mwenda, Co-founder and Executive Director, Pan African Climate Justice Alliance and Joni van de Sand, Global Co-Director, MenEngage Alliance.
Women and the UN: A New History of Women’s International Human Rights (8 March 2022)*
by Rebecca Adami, Associate Professor at the Department of Education, Stockholm University and Research Associate at the Centre for International Studies and Diplomacy, SOAS University of London (School of Oriental and African Studies).
*Please note that this presentation is based on readings from chapters in the book authored by Katherine Marino, Khushi Singh Rathore, Roland Burke, Aoife O’Donoghue, Adam Rowe, Ellen Chesler and Cornelia Weiss.
The Venice Commission and Gender Equality (22 February 2022)
by Veronika Bílková, head of the Centre of International Law at the Institute of International Relations in Prague, and Associate Professor in International Law at the Faculty of Law of the Charles University in Prague.
Gender Parity in International Courts and Organs: Moving the Agenda Forward After the Groundbreaking Human Council’s Report on the Representation of Women in International Human Rights Mechanisms (25 January 2022)
by Prof. Claudia Martin, Co-Director of the Academy on Human Rights and Humanitarian Law and Professorial Lecturer in Residence at American University Washington College of Law.
Building Resilience or Just Coping- How Women in Fiji are Faring with Climate Change and Disasters (14 December 2021)
by Nalini Singh, Feminist, Human Rights Activist and Director of the Fiji Women’s Rights Movement.
Achievements and Hurdles towards Beijing+30: Women’s Human Rights under Democratic Regression (5 May 2021)
by Prof. Bertil Emrah Oder, UNESCO Chairholder on Gender Equality and Sustainable Development, Dean, Koç University Law School.
Gender Smart Financing: Opportunities for Europe (21 April 2021)
by Dr Letizia Castellano, Policy Assistant to Markus Schulte, Directorate General Economic and Financial Affairs, DDG2.02 Financing of Innovation, Competitiveness and Employment Policies, European Commission.
Global Governance of Labour Migration Examined Through a Gender Lens (31 March 2021)
by Prof. Nicola Piper, British Academy Global Professor Fellow, Queen Mary University of London’s School of Law.
The Ambivalent Parity – The Constitution and Women’s Rights (17 February 2021)
by Prof. Marilisa D’Amico, Professor of Constitutional Law, Vice-rector, University of Milan.
Space4Women – Challenges and Opportunities (21 December 2020)
by Aisha Jagirani, Director General, Department of External Relations and Legal Affairs, Asia-Pacific Space Cooperation Organization (APSCO).
A Story to Be Told – When the Internet Works for Women and Gender Diverse People (16 December 2020)
by Chenai Chair, Research Manager: Gender and Digital Rights, World Wide Web Foundation.
Data Feminsim (9 December 2020)
by Prof. Catherine D’Ignazio, Assistant Professor of Urban Science & Planning Director of the Data + Feminism Lab, Department of Urban Studies & Planning, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) and Prof. Lauren Klein, Associate Professor Department of English and Department of Quantitative Theory and Methods, Emory University.
Gender Equality, Power and Participation during a Pandemic Crisis (26 May 2020)
(This is simultaneously session 6 of the "Pandemic and the Global Economy" virtual workshop) Chaired by Elisa Fornalé and Georgia Salanti. On the Panel: Zsuzsa Blaskó (European Commission), Alessandra Minello (Università degli Studi di Firenze) and Annalisa Rosselli (University of Rome Tor Vergata)
Progress in and challenges to the rights of women to non-discrimination and gender equality (13 May 2020)
by Dr Patricia Schulz, Former Director of the Federal Office for Gender Equality (FOGE) and Swiss Member of the UN Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women (2011−2018)
The untapped potential of gender equality in the water realm (6 May 2020)
by Mr Laurens Thuy, ‘Gender & Communication' Consultant at the UNESCO World Water Assessment Programme (WWAP)
A quantum leap for gender equality: for a better future of work for all (30 March 2020)
by Ms Emanuela Pozzan, Senior Gender Equality and Non-Discrimination Specialist Gender, Equality and Diversity & ILOAIDS and Mr Umberto Cattaneo, Economist, Gender, Equality and Diversity & ILOAIDS Branch (GED & ILOAIDS)
(En)gendering EU citizenship: caught between paid work and the market (20 March 2020)
by Dr Sandra Mantu, Assistant Professor, Centre for Migration Law, Radboud University
Women and risk: rewriting the rules (26 Ferbruary 2020)
by Dr Mara Catherine Harvey, Leader. Author. Change Maker.
Gender issues in transnational migration studies: recent developments and future prospects (only Powerpoint presentation; 19 February 2020)
by Dr Asuncion Fresnoza-Flot, Research Associate FNRS, Université Libre de Bruxelles
Gender equality in the judiciary – with an emphasis on international judiciary (11 December 2019)
by by Professor Catherine Kessedjian, professor emerita, University Panthéon-Assas Paris II
Mainstreaming gender in WHO work (4 December 2019)
by Dr Flavia Bustreo, Former WHO Assistant Director-General for Family, Women's and Children's Health
National Future Day
‘A Day as the Woman in Charge’
SNSF Professor Elisa Fornalé led a special project for school girls at the World Trade Institute (WTI) as part of Swiss National Future Day held on 14 November 2019.
‘A Day as the Woman in Charge’ focused on women in academia and the topic of 'Sea Level Rise and International Law'.
Prof. Fornalé also talked about what it is like to be a professor, and explained how students can rise to the rank of professor themselves.
For a full report on Swiss National Future Day at the university, see the article in the university online magazine, Uniaktuell (German).
Do you have a problem or need advice? Do you have a question or a recommendation? If you are affiliated with the World Trade Institute, we advise you to first contact the WTI Gender Coordinator:
WTI Gender Coordinator
Prof. Elisa Fornalé
World Trade Institute
University of Bern Office for Equal Opportunities
+41 31 631 39 32
Office for Equal Opportunities
Ombudsperson of the University of Bern
The ombudsperson is the contact for all employees of the University of Bern. UniBern employees can turn to an independent person in the event of conflicts arising from employment relationships. He or she works in complete independence from the bodies of the university. While the ombudsperson is not a judicial body, he or she can issue recommendations, offer advice, organize and attend discussions, mediate in the event of disputes and assist in the search for constructive solutions.
Ombudsperson of the University of Bern
c/o General Secretariat
Office of the Ombudsperson website
Do you know what makes a readable text? Can you spot repetitions, inconsistencies, wordiness and other problems in your own work?
If you already have a piece of writing that is ready for comment, you can request a voucher, which entitles you to a personal consultation (1 hour). Depending on budget availability, you could also apply for more than one. These vouchers will be issued on a first-come, first-served basis in the year.
The idea is not to discuss your academic research, or theoretical questions of language usage, but to offer personalised and practical tips on aspects of your writing that you are having trouble with. Examples include:
- How to use fewer words and write shorter sentences;
- How to express yourself more clearly;
- How to choose the correct tense;
- Paraphrasing, citations and avoiding plagiarism.
Consultations can be arranged by sending an email to: firstname.lastname@example.org
At least one week before the appointment, you will be asked to send a sample of your work and to mention what aspects of writing you feel you most need help with. The consultations will take place at a mutually convenient time.
Please note: this offer only applies to female researchers at the WTI
Information for WTI staff with families
- Where to breastfeed (closest to the WTI is Geographisches Institute)
- Flexible working models
- The Welcome Center information
- Link to list of measures for support for students with children (PDF, 278KB)
Do you have helpful information to share, or would like to add to our list of links? Please contact our Gender Coordinator, Elisa Fornalé.
Other helpful links
- List of links regarding stipends and grants for individuals (PDF, 128KB)
- Link to office for student financial support (PDF, 291KB)
- Counselling Centre Universities of Bern
- Sexual Harassment Contact Office
- Human Resources Office of the University of Bern
- Legal Services Office of the University of Bern
- Legal counsel of the intermediate staff association MVUB (only for members)
- Legal counsel and social fund of the Student Union of the University of Bern, SUB (only for members)
- Cantonal specialist institute for the gender equality of men and women
- Bern Women's Association (Frauenzentrale)
- Counseling Service Academic Careers Advice of the canton of Bern
- SNF Gender Equality Grant
Do you have helpful information to share or would like to add to our list of links? Please contact our Gender Coordinator, Elisa Fornalé.