Athena SWAN application and Action Plan 2018-2022
The University has held a bronze Athena SWAN award since 2006 and at the end of 2018 we submitted an application for a Silver award.
Accompanying the application is a new, comprehensive action plan which can be viewed here: Athena SWAN Action Plan 2018-2022 (PDF , 641kb). This document currently requires a staff sign-in.
In 2015 the Athena SWAN charter was expanded beyond advancing the careers of women academics and researchers in STEMM disciplines (Science, Technology, Engineering, Maths and Medicine), to addressing gender inequality across all disciplines and including professional and support staff and support for trans people.
The University's full application and approved Action Plan will be published after the results are released at the end of April. The application highlights the following:
- We have increased the proportion of women Readers from 16% to 28% since 2013.
- The proportion of women appointed as prestigious research fellows was 50% in 2017 compared to 20% in the previous round in 2011.
- Women’s representation on the University Executive Board (UEB) has increased from 25% to 47% since 2014.
- The proportion of women senior managers among professional and support staff (PSS) has increased from 36% to 46% since 2013.
- A dedicated Athena SWAN budget and staffing to support departments with their gender equality work and an ambitious set of institutional priorities.
- More than half (15) of our academic departments now hold Athena SWAN awards, including two gold and three silver, with a further nine departments working towards applying within the next two years.
- Appointment of a Gender Equality Research Fellow to build our evidence base of gender equality good practice.
- However, despite our decade-long track record with gender equality good practice and Athena SWAN:
- The increased representation of women Readers has not yet translated into the professoriate where the the proportion of women has remained static over the past five years at around 24.5%.
- The number of women in senior academic leadership positions is low, including heads of academic departments.
- The gender pay gap (19.3% in 2018) is unacceptably high, reflecting an under-representation of women in senior roles and an under-representation of men at lower PSS grades.
- Greater transparency and clarity is required in the academic promotions process.
- Career development support and opportunities for professional and support staff and research staff could be better, including training, mentoring and secondment opportunities.
- We need to take a more positive approach to flexible working with improved communication and promotion of different options, including part-time roles and job-sharing.
- Paternity leave uptake is low and we need to review our paid leave provision and support for staff taking and returning from parental leave.
The actions we are committing to in the Athena SWAN Action Plan 2018-2022 seek to address these issues and to continue to break down barriers to gender equality, supporting all staff in the University. The plan is part of our broader commitment to Equality, Diversity and Inclusion (EDI) and will work in tandem with the EDI Strategy.
For further information please contact Anna Reader, Athena SWAN Coordinator via email@example.com.