Workshop Tertiary Education Quality Standards Agency Conference 2019

Partnerships driving (e)quality (#20)

Kathryn Harrison-Graves 1
  1. Advance HE, York, YORKSHIRE, United Kingdom

This session will explore how a partnership between the Australian Academy of Science (AAS), the Australian Academy of Technology and Engineering (ATSE) and their Science Australia Gender Equity (SAGE) programme and Advance HE, is improving gender diversity in STEMM in the UK and Ireland, Australia and globally through the Athena SWAN Charter and its framework.

The continuing levels of gender inequality in higher education and STEMM are of great concern to the leadership, governance, teaching and research community globally. The Athena SWAN Charter was founded in the UK in 2005 to improve gender diversity in science in the UK. The Charter:

  • raises awareness of gender diversity issues and the reasons behind them;
  • facilitates better monitoring and reporting of gender diversity in science and research;
  • encourages a significant shift in organisational culture that fosters a professional and diverse environment where everyone can excel.


The Charter has had excellent engagement and impact since its establishment and a collaboration between SAGE and Advance HE has seen this engagement and impact expand to Australia. The flexibility of the approach has enabled the framework to be adapted to suit the Australian context, including the inclusion of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander staff in the process.

The success of SAGE and this partnership has led to collaborations with other countries including the US and Canada creating international communities of practice that are all working towards improving the systems, structures and cultures in higher education and research to create more inclusive working environments and quality research and teaching.