Exeter has been recognised for its ongoing commitment to gender equality with a renewed Athena Swan Silver Award.

The University of Exeter has been recognised for its ongoing commitment to gender equality with a renewed Athena Swan Silver Award.

Run by Advance HE, the Athena Swan Charter provides a framework for higher education institutions worldwide to support and progress their gender equality objectives. The University has held an institutional Athena Swan Award since 2011 and is delighted to have renewed its Silver Award, which was first conferred in 2018, following a string of successful departmental awards conferred earlier in the year.

As one of a select number of universities in the UK to achieve a Silver Award, we are also proud to have achieved this under the recently transformed UK Athena Swan Charter.

Originally launched to encourage and recognise commitment to advancing the careers of women in science, technology, engineering, mathematics and medicine (STEMM), the Charter is now used to address gender equality more broadly, and not just barriers to progress that affect women.

Highlights from the University’s submission commended by the review panel include our work to safeguard gender equality in the promotions process during the pandemic; Bystander Intervention training and our ‘Speak Out’ informal reporting tool.

Professor Lisa Roberts, President and Vice-Chancellor of the University of Exeter, said: “We are truly delighted that the University of Exeter has successfully renewed our Athena SWAN silver award. 

“This achievement is a wonderful recognition of the extensive work and dedication shown by everyone at Exeter to ensure we have a fair, inclusive and welcoming community. We are fully committed to doing even more to meet our Strategy 2030 aim, so that every member of our community can thrive.”

Chair of the University of Exeter’s Gender Equality Group, Alicia O’Grady added: “Colleagues past and present have worked tirelessly to ensure everyone in our university community can thrive in an inclusive and supportive culture. 

“I would like to acknowledge the ongoing contribution of committed champions and networks of staff and students – often women – whose work has contributed to advancing gender equality and inclusion. This award is a fantastic recognition of those efforts, and will spur us on to continue this important work.

“This achievement aligns directly with our Strategy 2030 and our commitment to being a university that is truly inclusive, fairer, and which nurtures future leaders.”

The University’s Gender Equality Group will now monitor progress against our new 2024-28 Gender Equality Action Plan. You can find the new action plan and read our submission in full on the EDI webpages.