Skip to main content

Introduction: The Gender Lens and Innovation in the Social Sciences


This collection turns a spotlight on the transformations wrought by gender innovation in the social sciences. Eighteen short and accessibly written case studies show how feminist and gender perspectives bring new concepts, theories and policy solutions. Scholars in five disciplines—economics, history, philosophy, political science and sociology—demonstrate how paying attention to gender can sharpen the focus of the social sciences, improve the public policy they inform and change the way we look at things. Gender innovation provokes rethinking at both the core and the margins of established disciplines, sometimes developing new fields of research that chart new territory. These case studies celebrate the contribution of feminist and gender scholars and the impact of their work within and beyond the social sciences.


  • Social sciences
  • Gender lens
  • Public policy
  • Case studies
  • Interdisciplinarity

This is a preview of subscription content, access via your institution.

Buying options

USD   29.95
Price excludes VAT (USA)
  • Available as PDF
  • Read on any device
  • Instant download
  • Own it forever
USD   49.99
Price excludes VAT (USA)
  • Available as EPUB and PDF
  • Read on any device
  • Instant download
  • Own it forever
Hardcover Book
USD   64.99
Price excludes VAT (USA)
  • Durable hardcover edition
  • Dispatched in 3 to 5 business days
  • Free shipping worldwide - see info

Tax calculation will be finalised at checkout

Purchases are for personal use only

Learn about institutional subscriptions

Key Readings

  • Ackerly, Brooke and Jacqui True. 2019 (2010). Doing Feminist Research in Political and Social Science (2nd edn). London: Palgrave.

    Google Scholar 

  • Breines, Ingeborg, R. W. Connell and Ingrid Eide. 2000. Male Roles, Masculinities and Violence: A Culture of Peace Perspective. Paris: UNESCO.

    Google Scholar 

  • Butler, Judith. 2006 (1990). Gender Trouble: Feminism and the Subversion of Identity. New York: Routledge.

    Google Scholar 

  • Connell, R. W. 1995. Masculinities. Sydney: Allen & Unwin.

    Google Scholar 

  • Crenshaw, Kimberlé. 1989. ‘Demarginalizing the Intersection of Race and Sex: A Black Feminist Critique of Antidiscrimination Doctrine, Feminist Theory and Antiracist Politics’. University of Chicago Legal Forum 140: 139–67.

    Google Scholar 

  • Crotty, Martin, and Paul Sendziuk. 2018. The State of the Discipline: University History in Australia and New Zealand: Report to the Australian Historical Association Executive, March.

    Google Scholar 

  • Hesse-Biber, Sharlene Nagy, ed. 2012. Handbook of Feminist Research: Theory and Praxis (2nd edn). London: Sage.

    Google Scholar 

  • Hutchison, Katrina and Fiona Jenkins. 2013. Women in Philosophy: What Needs to Change? Oxford: Oxford University Press.

    Google Scholar 

  • Pearse, Rebecca, James N. Hitchcock and Helen Keane. 2018. ‘Gender, Inter/Disciplinarity and Marginality in the Social Sciences and Humanities: A Comparison Across Six Disciplines. Women’s Studies International Forum 72(January–February): 109–126.

    Google Scholar 

  • Reinharz, Shulamit. 1992. Feminist Methods in Social Research. Oxford: Oxford University Press.

    Google Scholar 

  • Sawer, Marian. 2020. ‘Feminist Political Science’. In The Sage Handbook of Political Science, Vol. 1, edited by Dirk Berg-Schlosser, Bertrand Badie and Leonardo Morlino, 96–113. London: Sage.

    Google Scholar 

  • Sawer, Marian and Kerryn Baker, eds. 2019. Gender Innovation in Political Science: New Norms, New Knowledge. London: Palgrave Macmillan.

    Google Scholar 

Download references

Author information

Authors and Affiliations


Corresponding author

Correspondence to Fiona Jenkins .

Editor information

Editors and Affiliations

Rights and permissions

Reprints and Permissions

Copyright information

© 2020 The Author(s)

About this chapter

Check for updates. Verify currency and authenticity via CrossMark

Cite this chapter

Jenkins, F., Sawer, M., Downing, K. (2020). Introduction: The Gender Lens and Innovation in the Social Sciences. In: Sawer, M., Jenkins, F., Downing, K. (eds) How Gender Can Transform the Social Sciences. Palgrave Pivot, Cham.

Download citation

  • DOI:

  • Published:

  • Publisher Name: Palgrave Pivot, Cham

  • Print ISBN: 978-3-030-43235-5

  • Online ISBN: 978-3-030-43236-2

  • eBook Packages: Social SciencesSocial Sciences (R0)