Gender equality initiatives (GEIs) already exist in most UK engineering and physical sciences (EPS) departments. Over 180 EPS departments already hold awards under the Athena SWAN scheme. However, despite the extensive presence nationally of GEIs, progress on improving the gender balance of EPS students and staff has been painfully slow. The overall goal of this project is to accelerate progress towards gender equality by boosting the effectiveness of initiatives that already exist but are not leading to rapid improvement in gender statistics. Considerable infrastructure already exists to ensure that gender equality is prioritised at all levels of the institutions. This project stems from a conviction that rather than building alternatives to existing GEIs, it is essential to consider why these GEIs are not leading rapid improvements in gender statistics and find evidence-based ways to enhance and accelerate existing initiatives.
The aims of this project are:
- To gather new evidence about how GEIs should be designed and implemented to ensure EPS academics have positive attitudes towards them and engage with them.
- To use this evidence to design a unique set of training resources to change attitudes towards GEIs, and test these resources across the three institutions.
- To make these resources freely available to all EPS departments in the UK.