Science in Australia Gender Equity at Swinburne

Swinburne is enhancing gender equity and diversity by participating in the Science in Australia Gender Equity (SAGE) Pilot Program.

Currently, women comprise more than half of science PhD graduates and early career researchers in Australia, but only 17 per cent of senior academics in Australian universities and research institutes.

Science and engineering will shape the future of our world and we’re committed to advancing the careers of women in these fields.

What is SAGE?

SAGE is a national program that promotes gender equity and diversity in science, technology, engineering, mathematics and medicine (STEMM).

We’re one of 40 Australian institutions taking part in the two-year pilot program of the successful UK Athena SWAN accreditation program. There are 10 principles of the Athena SWAN charter to which we’ve committed. 

Science in Australia Gender Equity (SAGE) logo  Athena Swan logo

Benefits of gender equity and diversity

Diversity enhances innovation by offering different perspectives, which leads to more innovative solutions, helping us push the frontiers of discovery.

By addressing workplace barriers to advancing gender equity, both men and women across all disciplines benefit. This will help us retain our best scientists and innovators and ensure Australia’s research and development excellence is maintained.

Organisations using the Athena SWAN framework in the UK have improved gender diversity and bolstered representation of women in leadership in STEMM. Scientists in these organisations have experienced greater career satisfaction and fairness in workload allocation, and increased opportunities for training and development. This has lead to transformations in workplace culture.

Infographic showing the percentage of women in STEMM at Swinburne University
Representation of academic positions held by women in science, technology, engineering, mathematics and medicine (STEMM) disciplines at Swinburne.

What we're doing

As a SAGE member, we are working to reduce gender bias to create a more inclusive culture that values all staff. We’ve started a number of initiatives that will form part of our application for a Bronze Institutional award in early 2018.

Through the program we will:

  • collect and analyse staff and student data, and reflect on our current policies and practices
  • engage with staff and students to identify gaps and opportunities to improve gender equity in STEMM
  • develop and implement an action plan to improve our practices, and promote, develop and retain women in STEMM disciplines.

How you can get involved

We invite all members of the Swinburne community to get involved and help us create a gender-diverse organisation. Please come along to events, participate and contribute your ideas.

In early 2017, we are seeking volunteers to join these working groups:

  • Swinburne demographics
  • Supporting and Advancing Women’s Careers (including key career transition points, career development, flexible working and managing career breaks, maternity/paternity leave support, childcare, research support, organisation and culture)
  • Supporting Transgender People
  • Intersectionality
  • Supporting Indigenous Australians

Students can also get involved in our groups for women in science and engineering.

Contact us

Contact us to find out how you can get involved in SAGE at Swinburne.