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Success stories and sharing good practice

You can read more about the work we've been doing towards gender equality below:

Raising awareness

•Chemistry is prioritising educating the department about diversity issues, through a standing ED&I item at the termly departmental meetings. Presentation topics include gender-related issues, barriers in the research environment, gender pay gap, and active bystanders. Colleagues are encouraged to raise awareness around these topics and to recognise and challenge their own unconscious biases.

•The Mathematics Institute has a strong focus on EDI awareness events, including the annual special departmental seminar and social event in May: Celebrating Women in Maths Day.

•The Mathematics Institute has a partnership with the student-led Warwick Mathematics Society, that includes collaborative organisation of the annual Ada Lovelace Day showcasing the lives and achievements of female mathematicians, including those from Warwick.

Listening to our colleagues

•WMG hosted an external speaker to learn about their department’s Athena Swan Gold Award, sharing examples of what works at both departmental and institutional level. Representatives from 23 Warwick departments attended, and our annual •Gender Equality Awards were presented at this event, to recognise and celebrate gender equality work in our community.

•Psychology staff co-created a survey with a Masters student to explore the impact of COVID on working patterns, emotional labour and life satisfaction. The survey questions and findings will be shared more broadly across the university.

•Physics leads a Women in Physics Network that is open to all female and gender minority staff, postgraduate and final year undergraduate students. Some events run by the network include the whole department, while some are specifically for network members.

Supporting new starters

 •WMG is running a very well-received Buddy Scheme, recognised in the institutional Gender Equality Awards, where all new starters are offered a ‘buddy’, an existing member of staff, who can advise on departmental processes, campus life, and support for specific needs. Those making an international move to take up a post in WMG have a buddy with personal experience of the process.

 •Warwick Medical School (WMS) ran a successful New Starter Networking Event which it is intended will become an annual event. It provided an important networking activity, particularly for staff joining during the years impacted by the pandemic.

 Supporting community, health, and wellbeing

 •WMS is continuing to develop in-house expertise and deliver a range of activities to support Women’s Health and Menopause, including in-house training for all staff and managers, development of bespoke training for line-managers, fitness classes, and access to sanitary products through the Emergency Sanitary Products and Period Poverty campaign.

 •Physics created a new Equality, Diversity and Inclusion webpage on the departmental homepage, to ensure central signposting for current/prospective staff and students to departmental and institutional support and networks.

 •School of Engineering has embedded a initiative whereby staff are invited to record caring responsibilities and how these affect their working patterns, so that this can be taken into account when timetabling teaching for each academic year.

Collaboration with external partners

 •Statistics acted as a business host for the EY Foundation (which seeks to provide small projects for disadvantaged young people) in the context of scoping a required breastfeeding/expression room. This included visits to the University nursery and breastfeeding/expression rooms at Warwick, enabling young people to meet parents of young children, and subsequent delivery of a presentation to stakeholders including Estates, Statistics, and associated academic departments. This supported progress, helped identify shortfalls in the scope of existing provision at Warwick, and promoted inter-departmental collaboration.

•The Mathematics Institute has a partnership with Piscopia, a student-led UK network of female and non-binary mathematics students, collaborating with the Warwick Piscopia chapter to run conferences aimed at increasing the proportion of female students progressing to postgraduate study.

 •School of Engineering has an Educational Partnership with the Women’s Engineering Society, which has enabled the establishment and ongoing support of the student-led Warwick Women in Engineering and Science society.

 Improving our Research Culture

 •WMS has established a series of Research Culture Cafes and a burgeoning Research Culture Community, in response to a recent Athena Swan survey showing that improvements in the working environment would be welcome. The café-style group discussions, informed by Wellcome Trust activities, enable staff and students to discuss their experiences and identify both highlights and opportunities for improvement and change. This is informing development of a ‘Roadmap’ towards a more positive, vibrant, inclusive, and healthy research culture.

 •Physics has used departmental funds to expand access to the conference care fund to include PGR students as well as staff.

 Ensuring everyone has a voice

•Computer Science ran a facilitated staff focus group on mechanisms of being heard. Actions undertaken include agreeing a code of good practice for the main departmental committees, and setting up a social activities subgroup organising events to improve wellbeing and sense of belonging.

•School of Life Sciences (SLS) has campaigned successfully to grow the membership, diversity, and impact of its Athena SWAN committee for both staff and students, with particular efforts to create undergraduate discussion forums and departmental feedback routes for minority groups.

 Addressing under-representation in degree programmes

•Computer Science learned about ‘influences on female motivation to study computer science’ through a Marketing team-led report based on research papers and applicant survey data, and the findings are supporting broader widening participating work, highlighting the importance of interactions at open days and website presence, including the need for a diversity of relatable role models, a focus on the ‘human experience’, the wider societal impact of Computer Science and associated career opportunities.

•WMS established the WMS Athena SWAN Beacon Internships to champion diversity and equitable access to clinical research for medical students. This staff-student collaboration supports 5 MBChB students annually from under-represented groups in clinical academia.

•WMS PhD students have generated and distributed a science newsletter (including a competition with a £50 voucher prize) to secondary schools via an outreach distribution list reaching under-privileged areas.

 •School of Engineering awards 5 Women in Engineering Scholarships annually to first year undergraduate students who demonstrate their capacity and commitment to be ambassadors for women in the engineering sector.

Other areas of good practice

Annual Reports

From 2020, the Social Inclusion at Warwick Annual Report covers our Athena Swan work and reflects our co-ordinated approach to progress with Social Inclusion.

Our previous Annual Reports on Warwick’s Athena work detail the significant progress made on Athena initiatives at institutional and departmental level:

Excellence in Gender Equality Award

The Warwick Institutional Athena Swan Self-Assessment Team and the Gender Taskforce are delighted to announce that we have launched our 2023. Entries for our Excellence in Gender Award 2023 are now closed and the results will be announced on 28th November 10-11.30am when the Registrar will present the winners with their award.

Staff and student success at Warwick

Read below about success stories of women at Warwick:

If you have a success story you'd like to share, let us know at .

Departmental best practice examples

As part of our Athena Swan work, Warwick Business School set-up the Athena Swan Network for Business Schools. The network is intended to build support, share experiences and recognise good practice within the sector related to the advancement of gender equality.

From an initial event at The Shard in September 2018 with 18 attendees from 12 institutions, the network now has over 100 contacts, from both professional services and academics, representing more than 47 institutions within the UK and Ireland.

We continued to host the network throughout the pandemic, switching first to a virtual event, before moving to a hybrid format in September 2021. The network will continue in a hybrid format to enable as many members to participate as possible.

The topics discussed at the events, whilst always linked to Athena Swan, have evolved to include other aspects of equality, diversity and inclusion, particularly now with a focus on intersectionality. Each event has contributions from a range of speakers, for example Advance HE on the charter requirements, other Schools sharing their own experiences of Athena Swan, and academics who undertake research in the area.