The International Workshop on International Research Collaborations, sponsored by the National Science Foundation of the United States, took place June 2-4, 2010 in Arlington, Virginia.  This website serves as a venue through which the conversations and work that began at the IRC workshop can continue and be shared with others.

About the workshop

Women in the United States seem to be less involved in international research collaborations than men from majority groups. This dynamic is further complicated when we consider the intersections of other factors, such as race, disability, and age, with gender; we can also see lower rates of participation in international research collaboration among men from underrepresented groups.

To date, there is little research describing or explaining these disparities in participation rates. The ultimate goal of this workshop is to develop policy-oriented recommendations for funding organizations, which will lead to broader participation of underrepresented researchers in international collaborations.  The workshop has initiated this work by bringing together a cross-disciplinary group of academics, funding agency personnel and policymakers from ten countries and five continents to explore the individual, cultural, and institutional barriers to international collaboration for women researchers and researchers from other minority groups.

Through this work, we examine, in particular, the motivations, incentives and organizational structures of academic institutions that provide both opportunities and barriers to participation; we also scrutinize the strategies that international funding organizations have implemented to increase opportunities for women and minorities to collaborate in their research across national borders.


Organizers: Kathrin Zippel (Associate Professor of Sociology, Northeastern University) (PI) and Lisa Frehill (consultant) (Co-PI)

Consultants: Alice Hogan (Consultant and Founding Program Director for ADVANCE at NSF), Laura Kramer (Professor Emerita, Montclair State University and former Program Director for Advance at NSF), and Sorina Vlaicu (Consultant)

Graduate research assistants: Emily Smykla (University Excellence Fellowship recipient, Northeastern University) and Katrina Uhly (University Excellence Fellowship recipient, Northeastern University)


The workshop was funded with the generous support of the National Science Foundation (Grant No. OISE-0936970); and the Sociology and Anthropology Department, the Women’s Studies Program, and the Dean of the College of Arts and Sciences at Northeastern University.

Kathrin Zippel