The 2016 ‘Gendered Innovations in the Social Sciences’ conference at the Australian National University focused on the positive contributions to the social sciences made by gender innovation. Following on from this, invited experts were asked to prepare case studies of how the understanding of fundamental questions has been improved by the application of a gender lens. A selection of these case studies are published here, illustrating the scope of gender innovation across social science disciplines. Each of the case studies begins with the gaps in knowledge that existed before gender perspectives provided a sharper focus and new policy insights.
Historically, the discipline of economics has neglected subjects that particularly affect women. Resulting policies have produced a very high level of gender inequality in retirement income.
Breastfeeding and human milk provides an archetypical illustration of how feminist economic analysis has contributed new ways of thinking, and approaches to policymaking.
Feminist intervention has shown that women and men experiencing poverty differently.
Feminist scholarship has highlighted the need to adopt broader definitions of ‘violence,’ and to recognise that the motives and means of political violence may be deeply gendered.
Feminist historians have complicated any clear binary between the public and private spheres, redefining concepts such as ‘work’ and ‘politics’, and revealing their gendered constructions to provide more inclusive histories.