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RHEA emerged out of a Center for Women’s studies, which was founded in 1987 as the first university center Women’s studies in Flanders. Afterwards it was renamed after RHEA, Center of Gender and Diversity. This center of research was created among female members of the academic staff and were engaged to stimulate the research of gender relations and the social deprivation. Prof. em. Lydia De Pauw-Deveen was the first chairwoman. With her retirement she was followed up by Prof. DR. M. De Metsenaere; Prof. Dr. A. Woodward became the vice-president. RHEA has a wide interdisciplinary research and education tradition and acted for a very long time as a platform and meeting place for policymakers, civil society, researchers, PhD students and student in the field of women- and gender studies and diversity. In 2014 the new RHEA was launched as a centrum of expertise for Gender, Diversity and Intersectionality. By the integration of intersectionality, we emphasize the importance of gender dynamics and discrimination and to understand it in interaction with other categories of difference and structural subordination based on ethnicity, sexual orientation, religion, social class and age. The intersectionality perspective forms the core in our research, education and standpoints.

Prof. em. Lydia De Pauw-Deveen


Prof. em. M. De Metsenaere

Machteld De Metsenaere

Prof. em. Alison Woodward