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Athena Swan

The Institute was awarded an Athena SWAN Gold award in April 2017 after receiving a Silver award in 2013

The Equality Challenge Unit (ECU)’s Athena SWAN is a national charter mark that recognises the advancement of gender equality in higher education: representation, progression and success for all. It was established in 2005 to encourage and recognise commitment to advancing the careers of women in science, technology, engineering, maths and medicine (STEMM) employed in higher education and research.

The Athena SWAN awards process enables departments and universities to develop an action plan aimed at improving recruitment, retention and promotion of female academic and research staff, as well improving work to address gender equality more broadly, and not just barriers to progression that affect women.

Principles of Athena SWAN


Gold Award application

We submitted our application in November 2016 and were successful in receiving our Gold Award in April 2017.

This is one of only two Gold Athena SWAN awards at UCL and one of only ten gold awards across the country.

IfWH Athena SWAN gold award ceremony


Silver Award application

The Institute applied for and received an Athena SWAN Silver Award in April 2013.

IfWH Athena SWAN silver award ceremony


About Athena SWAN

Recognising advancement of gender equality: representation, progression and success for all.

ECU’s 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. In May 2015 the charter was expanded to recognise work undertaken in arts, humanities, social sciences, business and law (AHSSBL), and in professional and support roles, and for trans staff and students. The charter now recognises work undertaken to address gender equality more broadly, and not just barriers to progression that affect women.

ECU’s Athena SWAN Charter covers women (and men where appropriate) in:

  • academic roles in STEMM and AHSSBL
  • professional and support staff
  • trans staff and students

In relation to their:

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

Useful links

Athena SWAN at UCL

UCL Gender equality network

UCL 50:50 gender equality group

Dignity at UCL


News and Events

Who Cares for the Carer - 10th June 2019 (UCL Event)

Gender, ethnicity and career progression in UK higher education: a case study analysis (Research Papers in Education, Dec 2018)

Why do Universities have such large gender pay gaps? (PSA Blog, Apr 2019)

Gender equality deserves more than 1% (European Institute for Gender Equality, Apr 2019)

Girls will never feel welcome in STEM if we attack women in science (The Independent, Apr 2019)

NHS gender pay gap (The Independent, Mar 2019)

Why we still struggle with work-home conflict in women and men (The Conversation, Mar 2019)

How scientists are fighting against gender bias in conference speaker lineups (Science mag, Feb 2019)