In recognition of its significant and ongoing commitment to gender equity, La Trobe University has received an Athena SWAN Bronze Institutional Award from Science in Australia Gender Equity (SAGE).
Athena SWAN is the most comprehensive and systematic gender equality scheme in the higher education and research sector.
Following a comprehensive self-assessment process conducted over the past four years, a wide range of initiatives around improving gender diversity in STEMM disciplines have been developed, with many already implemented. These initiatives focus on improving working practices to support career progression, increasing career satisfaction and opportunities, and raising visibility of women in science.
La Trobe Vice-Chancellor Professor John Dewar said achieving the Athena SWAN Bronze Award marks a significant milestone in the University’s journey towards gender equality.
“Equity and inclusivity sit at the heart of La Trobe’s ethos and core values, and I am personally committed to ensuring that everyone has an equal opportunity to reach their full potential in the workplace, regardless of gender or background,” Professor Dewar said.
“That’s why it was so important for the University to participate in Athena SWAN, as it has enabled us to implement some significant changes which are already making a tangible difference.
“Through the Athena SWAN self-assessment process, we’ve identified and introduced several initiatives, including The Women’s Academic Promotions Support Program, The Tracey Banivanua Mar Fellowships and The Carers Travel Support fund.”
Professor Susan Dodds, Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Research and Industry Engagement), said she was proud that La Trobe had received this important award.
“We know from the UK – where Athena SWAN has been running for nearly two decades – that the process works to retain women in the research workforce and helps to foster their careers alongside their male peers,” Professor Dodds said.
“We have worked incredibly hard to reach this landmark moment at La Trobe and this Bronze Award recognises that. Our next step is to roll out our implementation plan and then aim for the Silver Award.”
About Science in Australia Gender Equity (SAGE)
The Science in Australia Gender Equity (SAGE) initiative was established to pilot the UK’s Athena SWAN Charter in Australia. Established in 2015, SAGE is a partnership between the Australian Academy of Science and the Australian Academy of Technology and Engineering.