The aim of Informatica Feminale is the sustainable professional integration of female experts in Informatics / Computer Science and ICT, which involves:
- acknowledging equal participation of all genders in technology development
- increasing the number of women students and graduates in computing studies;
- attaining women lecturers;
- connecting women students with professionals and supporting them during the transition into the labor market;
- developing new impulses — especially for women — in Informatics / Computer Science in higher education.
The nature of our conceptual starting point is clearly professional. Our mission is to motivate women in Informatics / Computer Science to create a place of exchange for themselves and other women interested in this discipline. This includes exchange of technical knowledge as well as everyday academic and occupational issues. Informatica Feminale also allows room for personal exchange.
On our website you can get more information about the background and concept of the summer university.
A place for experimentation and professional exchange
By initiating ‘Informatica Feminale – Summer University for Women in Informatics’ in the year 1997 we have created a room for developing and exploring new methods for gender equality in the scientific sector. The nature of our conceptual starting point is clearly professional.
Our aim is to activate women in Informatics (Computer Science) to create a place of exchange for themselves and other women interested in this discipline. This exchange is based on professional and technical topics, but also includes a personal level by means of intensive communication.
Informatica Feminale is a place for experimentation and intends to imply new impulses in Informatics (Computer Science).
Three conceptual aspects of academic education – defining curricular fundamentals, training of students and encouraging lecturers – are closely connected in this approach. They connect studying, institutional structures and practices at a university. Technical subjects are strongly influenced by male interests. With the concept of the Summer Universities we want to support women at different academic and scientific operating levels to exert influence.
We regard academic and research content in Informatics as well as structures and practices at institutions of higher education as key factors in exclusion of women in Informatics. Therefore gender equality policies should not stop at considering the teaching of professional content, but must also regard changes in academic culture in terms of changing the ambience and structure in everyday education and research at universities.
This will be a long road, but professional networking is indispensable. Informatica Feminale should create opportunities for women to strengthen their influence on different academic and scientific operating levels.
From the beginning the inter/national success of Informatica Feminale has been unmistakable. In 2001, the national concept of Informatica Feminale at Bremen University was complemented by a regional summer school in the German Land Baden-Württemberg. Since then, the regional summer school is organized at University of Applied Sciences Furtwangen and University of Freiburg on a yearly basis: www.netzwerk-fit.de/informatica. Since 2008: www.scientifica.de
The Federal Ministery of Education in Austria started the support of a national summer university, similar to Informatica Feminale, in 2002. The first ditact_women´s IT summer studies Salzburg started in September 2003 and continues on a yearly basis until today: www.ditact.ac.at.
From 2004 to 2008 the the Computer Science Department at University of Waikato, Hamilton, New Zealand organized the Computing Woman Congress (www.cwc.org.nz), following the concept of and in cooperation with Informatica Feminale at Bremen University.
The University of Bremen introduced the first national summer university for women in engineering in 2005: https://www.ingenieurinnen-sommeruni.de.
The Ingenieurinnen-Sommeruni has been continued since 2010 yearly and is now internationally visible with course offers in English and German.
More detailed information about the concept and history of Informatica Feminale can be found in German on this website.