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International seminar held by USACH addressed the differences, similarities and challenges in gender issues for Chile and Iceland

The event was held in a hybrid format with the participation of academics from the University of Iceland, a social anthropologist from the Ministry of Women and Gender Equality, and an academic from the Master in Public Health of the Faculty of Medical Sciences of the University of Santiago.
On Tuesday, May 3, in the framework of the Inter-institutional Agreement of the Erasmus+ Program, the University of Santiago of Chile hosted the international seminar "Dismantling gender violence in institutions: scenarios of transformation in Iceland and Chile", an activity that brought together the presentations of different professionals who addressed the problems and challenges in gender issues faced by both countries.
The event was coordinated by Dr. Amaya Pavez Lizarraga and Mg. Cecilia Baeza Correa, both academics from the Faculty of Medical Sciences (Facimed), with the support of the Department of International and Interuniversity Relations (DRII) of the University of Santiago. Simultaneously, the activity was held in person at the Hall of Honor of the University of Santiago and was also transmitted through Zoom and the YouTube channel of the DRII.
Among those attending the seminar were some USACH authorities, such as the director of the Department of International and Interuniversity Relations, Fernando Olmos Galleguillos, the vice-dean of Teaching and Extension of the Faculty of Medical Sciences, Alejandro Guajardo Córdoba, and the director of Gender, Diversity and Equity of the Campus, Karin Baeza Vásquez.
It was Facimed's Vice-Dean of Teaching who gave the opening remarks of the seminar, reflecting on institutional violence and how to overcome it. The authority expressed the commitment not only to convene this type of spaces, but also "to promote all the necessary discussions to open this topic and debate it not only in a theoretical sense, but also in a practical and political sense, which is where changes are generated in the entities".
The presentations began with Dr. Pamela Caruncho Franco, academic of the Master in Public Health of the Faculty of Medical Sciences, who addressed "The waves of Chilean feminism and its impact on gender violence in Chile. Action and reaction. From MEMCH to LasTesis". MSc. Marcela Gutiérrez, social anthropologist of the Division of Equality Policies of the Ministry of Women and Gender Equality, focused her presentation on "Policies for the prevention of gender violence promoted by the Ministry and its link with the educational context".
Afterwards, University of Iceland academics Dr. Gyda Pétursdóttir and Dr. Finnborg Steinþórsdóttir, professors and gender researchers, gave a joint presentation entitled "Feminist solidarity in the #metoo movement in Iceland and measures taken to combat gender-based violence in Icelandic universities". Finally, the event closed with a dialogue and a round of questions for the presenters.
Comparative experiences
Once the seminar was over, Dr. Gyda Pétursdóttir took a few minutes to reflect on the activity and the various presentations, commenting that "the most impressive thing is that there are so many similarities between Chile and Iceland. And also, that in a very short time you have established a gender culture within the university, whereas in Iceland it has taken many years. So you are really making great strides".
For her part, Dr. Finnborg Steinþórsdóttir, highlighted the effect of the 2019 social outburst, explaining that "when I arrived here (Chile) in 2017 the mentality was not feminist. And now I see the difference. It is impressive to see how everything has completely changed after the social movement." Regarding her post-seminar evaluation of the situation in Chile and Iceland, the academic commented that "comparing the two countries, Iceland is at the top of the gender equality lists as the best in the world in equality, and Chile is a little lower, and it is very interesting because, despite the many cultural, social, educational, etc. differences, we are still facing the same problems."
In relation to the scope of the seminar and the joint work between the academics of USACH and the University of Iceland, Professor Amaya Pavez Lizarraga said that there is a consolidated work in research and teaching, stating that in the case of the former "we have great challenges and good proposals". The professor also expressed the desire to "continue with this process of sensitization, deconstruction and construction of new meanings through academic teaching and training".