Dear Prime Minister
I am writing to you as Chair of the UK Social Policy Association. We have heard from Hungarian colleagues and also read with concern the reports that it is proposed to close the teaching of gender studies in universities in Hungary. I understand that it is proposed those already enrolled on such programmes will be able complete their studies but no further intakes or new programmes will be allowed.
As academics in social policy, we are well aware of the importance of the study of social and economic divisions in society, as we seek to understand the nature and impact of state provision. Gender is very important in this, with men and women having different experiences in employment, in the family, in civil society and in politics. Gender Studies is a respected area of the social sciences, with many Universities around the world providing such programmes, or including gender within other programmes. And there are many examples of international research programmes with a focus on gender divisions.
I hope that your government will re-consider this proposal and Universities in Hungary can continue to include gender studies as a legitimate and important area for social science inquiry.
Professor Jane Millar, OBE, FBA, FacSS
Chair of the Social Policy Association