Beyond the virus: Addressing gender disparities during COVID-19

Tuesday 16 January, 2024, 12h-13h CET

About the webinar

Gender disparities during COVID-19 extend far beyond infection rates. Scientific evidence indicates that the indirect effects of COVID-19 have disproportionately impacted women. Gender intersects with economic, social, environmental, and health factors, creating a complex web of challenges. This webinar explored how these differences manifest across various facets of the crisis, spanning from the workplace to the home.

HELICON has invited five leading researchers in the field to discuss the health risks faced by different genders during the pandemic. Recognizing and addressing these gender-specific challenges is not only a matter of equity but also crucial for developing targeted and effective responses.


12h00 Welcome & Introduction
— Prof. Dr. Brecht Devleesschauwer, Sciensano
12h05 IPV during Covid : crisis as game changer for policymaking
— Prof. Dr. Charlotte Vanneste, NICC-INCC, & Prof. Dr. Catherine Fallon, ULiège
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12h20 Gender analysis of Belgian recovery and resilience plans
— Dr. Laurène Thil, KULeuven
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12h35 An intersectional approach to gender inequalities during the pandemic: Insights from RESISTIRÉ
— Dr. Federica Rossetti, Sciensano
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12h50 Closing remarks
— Dr. Hildegard Van Hove, Instituut voor de gelijkheid van vrouwen en mannen- Institut pour l'égalité des femmes et des hommes


Charlotte Vanneste
Charlotte Vanneste

Charlotte Vanneste, PhD in Criminology, is a senior researcher at the National Institute for Criminalistics and Criminology (Brussels) and professor at the University of Liège. Public policy on intimate partner violence has been one of her areas of research for the past ten years. In particular, she coordinated an interdisciplinary research project (IPV-PRO&POL funded by BELSPO) on Intimate Partner Violence: impact, processes, evolution and related public policies in Belgium, which led to the publication of a book in 2022 entitled "Regards croisés sur la violence entre partenaires intimes/ Gekruiste perspectieven op partnergeweld " (published by Politeia). She was then co-promoter of the following IPV-DACOVID research project, on Intimate Partner Violence: During and After COVID.

Catherine Fallon

Catherine Fallon first trained in natural science and obtained a MSc degree in Biochemical Engineering (MIT – USA). After several years in the industry and in the European Commission, she earned her PhD in Political Sciences and invested the field of “Science and Society” by doing research in the social and political aspects of technological development and risk governance, such as the governementality of new genetic tests in health policy or the governmentality of IPV in Belgium. She is Professor in Public Administration and Policy Evaluation at the Université de Liège (Belgium)

Laurène Thil
Laurène Thil

Laurène Thil joined the research group Work, Organisation and Social Dialogue at HIVA as a researcher on January 2022, where she is conducting research on the quality of work and social dialogue. Her research is primarily focused on labour market analysis and gender equality. She is conducting and coordinating many research projects, commissioned by EU, Belgian federal or Flemish government agencies.

Federica Rossetti
Federica Rossetti

Federica Rossetti is currently a researcher at the Cancer Centre, Sciensano, working in a European Joint Action on cancer and non-communicable diseases prevention. She has previously worked in the service Health information (Sciensano) for the EU Horizon2020-funded project RESISTIRÉ on the impacts of COVID-19 policies on gendered and intersecting inequalities. She holds a PhD degree in Social Sciences. Her main research interests include socio-economic inequalities, and she has expertise in both quantitative and qualitative data analysis.  

Hidegard Van Hove
Hildegard Van Hove

Dr. Hildegard Van Hove is coordinator gender statistics at the Belgian Institute for the Equality of Women and Men. Her areas of expertise encompass statistics and indicators on the gender pay gap, income and poverty, segregation on the labour market, discrimination, sexism, time use, violence, and the methodology of public surveys and administrative data.


HELICON is funded by the Belgian Federal Science Policy (BELSPO) through the BRAIN-be 2.0 (2018-2023) programme.

BRAIN-be logoBELSPO logo

Information sheet for participants: EN • NL • FR

Project coordinator

Prof. dr. Brecht Devleesschauwer

Sciensano, Department of Epidemiology and Public Health, Service Health Information