Welcome to Athena Swan at the University of Leicester
Charter for Women in Science
What is Athena Swan?
The Athena Swan Charter recognises and celebrates good employment practice for women working in Science, Engineering and Technology (SET) in higher education.
Why is this important?
Women are under-represented in science, the more senior the role the greater the deficit. In some disciplines there is significant under-representation of women at all levels.
Disciplines with serious under-representation of one gender runs the risk of missing talented people it would otherwise gain and retain. Disciplines dominated by one gender are likely to have an unbalanced approach and in every discipline the richness and variety of the subject deserves the attention of an equally diverse approach.
How does this affect the University of Leicester?
The University gained the Athena Swan Bronze Award in September 2008 for its work and proposals to improve the participation of women in SET within the University.
Indeed, we want to remove all barriers to both men and women that exist as a consequence of their gender. These more commonly apply to women but not exclusively.
Three Departmental Athena SWAN Award Successes
Congratulations to the Department of Cancer Studies and Molecular Medicine, School of Psychology and the Department of Physics and Astronomy, who all achieved Bronze Athena SWAN Awards, as a result of the November 2012 submissions. The Departments shall all be presented with their awards at the National Athena SWAN Award Ceremony at the Royal Society of Edinburgh in June.
The University of Leicester had a one hundred percent success rate, which is significant, given that only seventy percent of submissions were successful. Athena SWAN saw a large increase to 68 successful awards, from the previous round’s 25.
Departments produced documents of around 50 pages last November, detailing the gender balance among undergraduates, postgraduates, staff and senior management and demonstrating the steps that the department was taking to reduce inequalities.
The University of Leicester as an institution also holds a Bronze Athena SWAN Award, initially granted in 2008, and renewed in 2011.
The Athena SWAN Charter is a national award scheme. It recognises and celebrates good employment practice for women working in science, engineering and technology (SET) in higher education and research. The scheme and its members set out to develop good practice leading to better gender equality. Through this the University aims to improve the representation of women in science particularly at a senior level.