Equity and diversity

At Swinburne, we are all responsible for creating a culture that provides an environment that is safe, flexible and fair. It is also culturally appropriate, friendly and professional – free from discrimination and harassment.

We seek to create a culture of acceptance. We cultivate and respect the strength that difference creates. Swinburne celebrates the diversity of its community and recognises the rights and responsibilities of all those within it.

Equity and diversity in action

Regardless of race, religion, ability, sexuality or gender, Swinburne actively promotes a culture that is inclusive for all. 

Swinburne has initiated the following strategies and action plans to promote and increase diversity and equality for staff and students.

Our scholarships and grants are some examples of these strategies in action.

Gender equality

Workplace Gender Equality Agency as an Employer of Choice for Gender Equality ‌Swinburne has long been a champion of workplace gender equality. In 2018, we were again recognised by the Workplace Gender Equality Agency as an Employer of Choice for Gender Equality for the tenth year in a row. Read more about our commitment to gender equality

We celebrate and respect the strength that difference creates and are committed to progressing gender equality. To create a fair and equitable workplace, all genders need to enjoy the same opportunities, support, outcomes and rights.

We focus on providing support and working conditions that enable our staff greater work-life balance. This includes generous paternity and maternity leave for families and flexible working arrangements.

Message from the Vice-Chancellor and President

At Swinburne we know our diversity is a source of strength. We recognise and celebrate our diverse people and we pride ourselves on a culture of inclusion, where students and staff can be recognised for who they are and the contributions they make to our community.

Achieving gender equity is an essential prerequisite for the fair and equitable workplace. It requires a workplace where all have a seat at the decision making table and enjoy the same opportunities, support, outcomes and rights. We know also that gender is non-binary and creating space for our colleagues and students who do not identify as male or female to be visible and included is an important part of gender equity.

For nine consecutive years, Swinburne has been recognised as an Employer of Choice for Gender Equality by the Workplace Gender Equality Agency. We recently received notification that we are again complaint with the Workplace Gender Equality Act 2012 and have submitted our application to be recognised as an employer of choice for a tenth year.

There is always more we can do.

We have committed to an ambitious and exciting four-year action plan as part of the Science in Australia Gender Equity (SAGE) pilot program. We have developed parental leave kits to support parents to make the best possible decisions for their family. And we maintain our commitment to the Respect. Now. Always initiative and to the prevention and reporting of domestic and family violence.

I look forward to celebrating more important achievements in gender equity with you as we continue to move forward.

Professor Linda Kristjanson AO
Vice-Chancellor and President

Science in Australia Gender Equity (SAGE) Pilot

‌Swinburne is participating in the Science in Australia Gender Equity (SAGE) pilot program, which aims to address the underrepresentation of women in the science, technology, engineering, maths and medicine (STEMM) disciplines. Swinburne is one of 40 Australian institutions taking part in the two-year pilot program of the UK's Athena SWAN Charter.

Pride @ Swinburne

Swinburne commits to creating a diverse and inclusive culture across our university. Staff and students of diverse gender and sexual identity and expression are an integral part of our diversity.

Financial inclusion

‌Swinburne was the first educational institution to participate in the Financial Inclusion Action Plan pilot program. The program aims to address the financial exclusion in our community by introducing initiatives that support our students enduring financial hardship.

Cultural diversity

Swinburne was the first university in Australia to launch a Charter of Cultural Diversity. It reaffirms and extends acknowledgement and respect for the many cultures that make up the Swinburne community. The Charter is underpinned by a set of Cultural Objectives, with initiatives in the areas of Culture and Capability, Teaching and Learning, Research and Development, Engagement and International Collaboration.

  • PDF

    Cultural Diversity Objectives [PDF 3.56MB]

    This document outlines the general principles set out in the charter and translates these principles into specific objectives to provide academic and organisational direction.


Swinburne’s AccessAbility Action Plan 2015-2020 (AAP) details our strategy to create an accessible, supportive university and to be disability confident.


Swinburne contributes to actions that promote and support respect for Indigenous Australians in collaboration with Reconciliation Australia.