About Athena SWAN
The Athena SWAN Charter was established in the UK in 2005 to encourage and recognize commitment to advancing gender equality in science, technology, engineering, maths and medicine (STEMM) fields. The program provides a standardized methodological framework for collecting data and identifying gaps and opportunities in gender equity processes, along with workshops to support successful accreditation, constructive feedback and support from gender equity experts.
Athena SWAN’s international reputation for achieving tangible outcomes has led its expansion to Ireland, Australia (SAGE Pilot), the United States of America (Pilot SEA Change) and Canada (Dimensions).
The Science in Australian Gender Equity (SAGE) Pilot of Athena SWAN was introduced in Australia in 2015. A total of 45 organisations (Universities, Medical Research Institutes and Publicly Funded Research Organisations) joined the SAGE Pilot, forming three cohorts with staggered application timeframes for Athena SWAN accreditation.
All participating members are committing to undertake a thorough self-assessment process of institutional gender equity policies, programs, practices and data in order to develop a robust, measurable action plan to address the identified gaps and opportunities. By being part of Athena SWAN, institutions are adopting 10 key principles within their policies, practices, action plans and culture.
- We acknowledge that academia cannot reach its full potential unless it can benefit from the talents of all.
- We commit to advancing gender equality in academia, in particular addressing the loss of women across the career pipeline and the absence of women from senior academic, professional and support roles.
- We commit to addressing unequal gender representation across academic disciplines and professional and support functions. In this we recognise disciplinary differences including- the particularly high loss rate of women in science, technology, engineering, mathematics and medicine (STEMM).
- We commit to tackling the gender pay gap.
- We commit to removing the obstacles faced by women, in particular, at major points of career development and progression including the transition from PhD into a sustainable academic career.
- We commit to addressing the negative consequences of using short-term contracts for the retention and progression of staff in academia, particularly women.
- We commit to tackling the discriminatory treatment often experienced by transgender people.
- We acknowledge that advancing gender equality demands commitment and action from all levels of the organisation and in particular active leadership from those in senior roles.
- We commit to making and mainstreaming sustainable structural and cultural changes to advance gender equality, recognising that initiatives and actions that support individuals alone will not sufficiently advance equality.
- All individuals have identities shaped by several different factors. We commit to considering the intersection of gender and other factors wherever possible.
Applications for the Bronze Institution Award are reviewed by independent peers nominated and selected from Australia’s higher education and research sector. Peer review panels are formed to ensure a range of expertise and are moderated by selected Fellows of the Academy of Science and Academy of Technology and Engineering.
Results of the peer review process for institutions who submitted in March 2018 as Cohort 1 were announced in December 2018. Monash was among 15 member organisations recognized for their progress in addressing gender inequity and supporting greater diversity an inclusion.
In taking the panel you are committing to openly calling for gender equity on panels, at conferences and other professional events. You also commit to actively supporting women's voices and championing diversity more broadly.