Athena Swan

Athena Swan Gender Charter logo

Loughborough’s Athena Swan Bronze Award demonstrates our ongoing commitment to the advancement of gender equality: representation, progression, and success for all.

The Athena Swan Charter is a national initiative that recognises commitment to tackling gender inequality in higher education and research.

The Charter was established in 2005 to encourage and recognise commitment to advancing careers of women in Science, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics and Medicine (STEMM).

In 2015, the Charter was extended to include Arts, Humanities, Social Science, Business and Law (AHSSBL), as well as professional and support roles, and for trans and non-binary staff and students.

In 2021, the Charter underwent a further transformation to ensure its suitability for the future of the higher education sector.

The transformed Charter is based on ten key principles. By being part of this, institutions are committing to a progressive charter; adopting these principles within their policies, practices, action plans and culture.

Athena SWAN at Loughborough

As an institution, we gained our first Bronze Institutional Athena SWAN Award in 2009. Our Bronze award was renewed in 2012, 2014 and 2018. The University is currently working through key gender equity actions, documented in our most recent institutional application.

A submission for institutional Athena Swan Bronze Renewal award was made in July 2023 and we are awaiting the outcome. Details of the new action plan will be available in due course.

School Awards

Our Schools and dates when they have achieved their most recent award:

  • School of Architecture, Building and Civil Engineering – Bronze, 2017
  • School of Science – Bronze, 2019
  • School of Social Sciences and Humanities – Bronze, 2019
  • School of Sport, Exercise and Health Sciences – Silver, 2020
  • School of Mechanical, Electrical and Manufacturing Engineering – Bronze, 2020
  • School of Aeronautical, Automotive, Chemical and Materials Engineering – Bronze, 2020

Gender Equality Project Management Board (PMB)

In February 2020, the University established a Gender Equality PMB to accelerate the pace of change towards gender equality within our academic community.

The University aims to have 40% female research, Teaching and Enterprise (RTE) staff by 2025.

As a result of the PMB, reviews were launched of RTE (Research, Teaching, Enterprise) recruitment and promotions criteria and support to address concerns regarding differential experiences and outcomes associated with these processes.

The importance of Athena Swan

Athena Swan offers a valuable framework for guiding cultural and policy changes at the University which will create a more inclusive working environment for all staff and students.

The transformed Charter allows us to reflect and identify organisational and cultural practices that address barriers to gender equity and to prioritise on areas that are important and key to the University and Schools.