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Our inclusive and diverse working environment is recognised by the Athena Swan Silver Award, a charter committed to the progression of the careers of women in science.

what is athena swan?

Equality Challenge Unit’s (ECU) Athena SWAN Charter was established in 2005 to encourage and recognise commitment to advancing the careers of women in science, technology, engineering, maths and medicine (STEMM) employment in higher education and research. The charter has since expanded to recognise work undertaken in the disciplines of arts, humanities, social sciences, business and law (AHSSBL).  This expanded remit includes staff in professional and support roles, trans staff and students, and recognises work undertaken to address gender equality more broadly, and not just the barriers to progression that affect women.

athena swan

why is it important?

The Athena SWAN Charter is based on ten key principles which aim to advance gender equality and reduce discrimination through sustained structural and cultural change within Higher Education.

The Charter considers:

  • representation
  • progression of students into academia
  • journey through career milestones
  • working environment for all staff

what does it mean to you?

Athena SWAN is a driver for change in culture and attitudes.  As an Athena SWAN Silver award holder, we are committed to creating a better working environment for all and, through feedback mechanisms such as surveys and focus groups, we regularly review, revise and improve our policies and practices to ensure that equality becomes entrenched in our everyday activities.  Key developments to date include:

  • a more effective induction process for new staff in the Department;
  • introduction of grant writing workshops to support early career researchers;
  • profile raising for junior researchers through profile pages on the DPAG website;
  • improved communication through the DPAG Digest and Twitter account;
  • creation of an annual Departmental Away Day to improve sense of community within the Department.

We are working towards our Athena SWAN Silver renewal application and, as part of that process, will use staff and student feedback to consider where we have made progress and where we still need to improve.

Click here to find out more about our applications, action plans and self-assessment teams (SATs).

Video Spotlight on Shared Parental Leave

For Universal Children's Day 2019

International Women's Day 2019 - Video Profiles

Latest news

Natalie Connor-Robson widens access to STEM skills with In2scienceUK

OPDC Career Development Fellow Natalie Connor-Robson was first generation in her family to go to university and is now delighted to be sharing STEM career advice with students taking part in the In2scienceUK programme.

Researchers discover cell communication mechanism that drives cancer adaptation

Collaborative Cancer Research UK-funded studies from DPAG and Oncology researchers have uncovered a new mechanism by which cancer cells adapt to the stresses they encounter as they grow and respond to therapies.

Black In Neuro Week: Dayne Beccano-Kelly on race, academia and research

Black In Neuro Week 2020 is dedicated to celebrating black excellence in neuroscience related fields. Daily social media campaigns highlight key issues and amplify the voices of the Black In Neuro community - #NeuroRacism is the focus of Tuesday 28 July. OPDC Career Development Fellow in Neurobiology Dr Dayne Beccano-Kelly has shared his experience as a black professional working in Parkinson's research in a timely article published in Parkinson's Life.



Find out more about the latest Athena Swan events going on in the Department here.



Want to know more? Go to our resources page.