CITEC Sends a Signal with Visiting Gender Studies Professorship

Professor Dr. Gloria Origgi from Paris teaching at Bielefeld University

To what degree does gender influence social interaction? What role does gender play in human perception? What are stereotypes all about? Professor Dr. Gloria Origgi dedicates herself to these types of questions in her work at Bielefeld University’s Cluster of Excellence Cognitive Interaction Technology (CITEC). CITEC was able to welcome the philosopher as a visiting professor in Gender Studies for the current summer term. During her stay, Origgi will give talks, hold a seminar, and teach on social constructions of gender as part of the interdisciplinary Gender Studies lecture series.

Prof. Dr. Gloria Origgi is the second visiting gender studies professor at the Cluster of Excellence CITEC.Photo: CITECIn her main lecture at CITEC, Origgi applies the method of the Turing Test, which is based on an imitation game, to pursue the question of whether a robot can imitate the thinking of a human being (a woman in this case) – and what difference it makes for the robot’s human counterpart if the robot imitates a woman or a man. In her seminar with Master’s students and doctoral researchers, the philosopher addresses how these women deal with ascribed gender roles in both their professional and private lives.

Gloria Origgi teaches and conducts research at the renowned Institut Jean Nicod (IJN) in Paris, France, and also teaches at the École des Hautes Études en Sciences Sociales (EHESS) in Paris, which is an elite institution of higher learning in the social sciences. In addition to this, Origgi, who originally comes from Italy, is also known for her work as a writer: in 2008, she published her first book “La Figlia della Gallina Nera” (The Daughter of Gallina Nera), and in 2013, her book “La Reputation” (The Reputation) was published in France.

This is already CITEC’s second visiting professor for Gender Studies. In 2014, social robotics researcher Selma Šabanović, PhD (from Indiana University, Bloomington, USA), taught at CITEC and Bielefeld University as a visiting professor. With this professorship, the Cluster is sending a signal to bring greater gender-sensitive content into both research and teaching.

The Visiting Professorship for Gender Studies is a cross-faculty “traveling professorship” at Bielefeld University. With this professorship, the University, together with its various faculties, is seeking to strengthen gender-specific content in research and teaching. The goal is to shine a light on women in research and teaching, as well as disseminating and embedding knowledge from gender studies research. Bielefeld University has been financing the Visiting Gender Studies Professorship since 2010.

Former visiting Gender Studies professors have included attorney Dr. Ulrike Lembke (University of Hamburg) and Dr. Barbara Degen (co-founder of the Feministischen Rechtsinstitut [Feminist Legal Institute] in Bonn and Hamburg), as well as epidemiologist Dr. Claudia Terschüren (Landesinstitut für Gesundheit und Arbeit des Landes Nordrhein-Westfalen [State Institute for Health and Work in North Rhine-Westphalia]), professor of sociology Dr. Cornelia Helfferich (Evangelische Hochschule [Protestant Univeristy of Applied Sciences], Freiburg), professor of English language and literature Dr. Maryemma Graham (University of Kansas, USA), social robotics researcher Selma Šabanović, PhD (Indiana University in Bloomington, USA), the die physicist Professor Dr. Martina Merz (Universität Klagenfurt, Austria), die mathematician Dr. Katharina Habermann (Göttingen State and University Library), die biologist Professorin Dr. Alexandra Kautzky-Willer (Medical University of Vienna, Austria). 

More information is available online at:
Information about the talks and the lecture:
Visiting Gender Studies Professorship at Bielefeld University:
The Diffence Between Robot “Girls” and “Boys”:ädchen_und
Entry in the schedule of lectures:

Saskia Wolter, Bielefeld University
Cluster of Excellence CITEC, Gender and Diversity
Telephone: 0521 106-6567