Measures and Materials


THE EDI-Toolkit

The experiences made have been summarised at the which will be further integrated into EBRAINS ( The guiding questions, templates and tools are useful for every science project, based on the experiences made when developing in a complex, large-scale, international, publicly funded research infrastructure (CoLIPRI).

Image: Wolfgang Steinbauer

Complex Projects - Diverse Solutions?

In this paper we provide a novel framework applying complexity research to identify challenges in RDI projects that impact the implementation of Equality, Diversity and Inclusion (EDI). We thereby refer to equality in line with the European strategy towards gender equality and to inclusion as the attempt of actively involving and welcoming individuals and groups who may have been traditionally excluded or marginalised:

Grasenick, Karin, Romero, Pilar F., & Salles, Arleen. (2023). Complex Projects - Diverse Solutions? Theoretical Reflection, Practical Experiences, and Recommendations on Enhancing Equality, Diversity, and Inclusion in Research Projects. 

HBP High Potential Mentoring Programme

Due to its enormous success, the HBP High Potential Mentoring Programme is now carried out one last time, after it was originally launched on International Women's Day 2019. It was developed by the Diversity and Equal Opportunities Committee (former Gender Advisory Committee) and is designed for HBP early career stage scientists, researchers and managers of science. 

The programme embraces diversity and inclusiveness as it supports both women and men with the aim of improving the gender balance in all disciplines, contributing to the success of the HBP. This includes both scientific work and science management activities, as both are essential elements in a large project like the HBP. The programme design reflects feedback received during the career planning workshops held at the Student Conference in Ghent, Belgium 2019. Held in gender mixed as well as homogeneous discussion groups, participants emphasised the importance of understanding each other in order to overcome gender biases and to share responsibilities and collaborate fairly as a team.

Photo credit: Images from HBP Education workshops and conferences 2018/2019

Mentoring in the HBP is designed as “High Potential Programme” to provide interdisciplinary, cross-organisational support for HBP early career stage scientists, researchers and managers of science. Mentors and Mentees agree on 6-8 (virtual) meetings between April and December 2022, each no longer than an hour. Furthermore, all mentorships are supported by guiding documents (see Mentoring Process Materials below).

In addition, online accompanying training is offered for every HBP member who is interested in career development and leadership (more information can be found here ). Additional tools and methods for career development are provided in the Career Planning Presentation and guiding documents.

For further info on mentoring, read the blog post on the HBP High Potential Mentoring Programme. Registration is now closed.
You might also contact Karin Grasenick ( directly.

Mentoring Process Materials

Please find a portfolio of all the Mentoring Process Materials here.

In case any questions arise, or a mentoring partnership must be cancelled unexpectedly (e.g. due to new professional obligations of mentor or mentee) mentor and mentee inform the coordinators who will be pleased to be at their disposal.


Diversity In Research Paper Awards (DIRPA)

The DIRPA of the Human Brain Project (HBP) awarded the Best Diversity in Research Papers, i.e. publications that consider diversity traits such as sex, gender, age, ethnicity, etc. in their specific field of research. Differentiating variables has been recognised to be relevant in brain research, robotics, and AI alike – from the level of stem cells to the reflected usage of data in order to avoid the replication of stereotypes.

Considering sex/gender has become a requirement by default for the Horizon Europe programme. Examples are outlined in the second “Gendered Innovations” policy report

The DIRPA were awarded for the first time at the HBP Summit in Athens (Feb. 2020) and for the second time in the webinar "Diversity in brain research: Does it matter?" (May 2022).


HBP Leaders' Commitment to Equal Opportunities and Inclusiveness

The members of the Science and Infrastructure Board (SIB) endorsed the letter and the attachments, which comprise a vision, the mission to follow the cascade model and a checklist (link).

The checklist gives each leader 20 action steps to care about: from reflecting statistics to a fair work distribution in teams and individual career development plans.


Every person with a leadership responsibility is invited to join and sign the letter and choose those aspects from the checklist that can be applied to their position. HBP leaders thereby counteract the leaky pipeline and strive to implement the reference model of the HBP: Women and men are expected to be represented at each career level in proportion to the level below.

The initial figures are derived at the level of PhD students and Postdocs, based on ratios from sources like the European SHE FIGURES and/or organisations considered as best practice for each Work Package or Task. If there is a significant difference, the responsible leaders will check closely to try to find the reason. If the reason is discrimination, the HBP will endeavour by all means to fix that.

All HBP leaders are encouraged to sign the letter! Join us, take actions, share your thoughts and suggestions with the Diversity and Equal Opportunities Committee (former Gender Advisory Committee).