Last updated: 3 May 2022
A Gender Equality Plan is a set of actions that aim to provide a strategic view of achieving gender equality. The University of Gloucestershire is dedicated to ensuring and promoting gender equality. The University’s commitment to gender equality is embedded within a number of reports, networks and training, in line with the University’s wider approach of advancing equity within the workplace.
We fulfil the Horizon Europe GEP eligibility:
The GEP must be a formal document published on the institution’s website, signed by the top management and actively communicated within the institution. It should demonstrate a commitment to gender equality, set clear goals and detailed actions and measures to achieve them.
Our Equity, Diversity and Inclusion Strategy demonstrates our commitment to creating an inclusive University where everyone feels valued and has a sense of belonging; a culture where it is safe to speak up and speak out and where everyone is empowered to grow and realise their full potential.
A GEP must have dedicated resources and expertise in gender equality to implement the plan. Organisations should consider what type and volume of resources are required to support an ongoing process of sustainable organisational change.
We have a dedicated Leadership and Governance structure provided by our Equality, Diversity and Inclusion Committee. This Committee advises, makes recommendations and oversees the advancement and monitoring of equality, diversity and inclusion across the University. The Committee comprises ‘Equality Champions’, representatives from each school and department, the trade unions, staff networks and the Student Union.
Alongside the Committee we have an Equality, Diversity and Inclusion Team, which leads on and supports the creation of inclusive environments supported by our staff networks, including our Women’s Network:
Organisations must collect sex/ gender disaggregated data on personnel (and students, for the establishments concerned) with annual reporting based on indicators. Organisations should consider how to select the most relevant indicators, how to collect and analyse the data, including resources to do so, and should ensure that data is published and monitored on an annual basis. This data should inform the GEP’s objectives and targets, indicators, and ongoing evaluation of progress.
The University publishes reports annually on the progress made against its Equality Objectives and, in a separate report, on its Gender Pay Gap. It also publishes its workforce statistics and student data to measure its progress against increasing the diversity of both. The latest monitoring and progress reports can be found via the following links:
The GEP must also include awareness-raising and training actions on gender equality. These activities should engage the whole organisation and be an evidence-based, ongoing and long-term process. Activities should cover unconscious gender biases training aimed at staff and decision-makers and can also include communication activities and gender equality training that focuses on specific topics or addresses specific groups.
We all have a responsibility at the University to create and sustain an inclusive and welcoming environment for all. We ask all staff to complete our e-learning module on equality and diversity and attend our ‘Developing Inclusive Behaviours Workshop’. We offer an e-learning module on Unconscious Bias for staff and managers. We also ask all staff who sit on interview panels to complete the recruitment and selection e-learning and attend the interviewer skills training. Alongside this we deliver Inclusive Recruitment Training for Council Members.
The University supports the career development of female staff through Aurora:
“Aurora is Advance HE’s leadership development initiative for women. It is run as a unique partnership bringing together leadership experts, higher education providers and research institutes to take positive action to address the under-representation of women in leadership positions in the sector.”
GEPs aim to promote gender equality through the sustainable transformation of organisational culture. Organisations should implement necessary policies to ensure an open and inclusive working environment, the visibility of women in the organisation and externally, and that the contribution of women is properly valued. Inclusive work-life balance policies and practices can also be considered in a GEP, including parental leave policies, flexible working time arrangements and support for caring responsibilities.
At the University we support work-life balance and inclusive organisational culture by providing a suite of family friendly and flexible working policies.
Increasing the number and share of women in leadership and decision-making positions touches upon all aspects in the GEP. Measures to ensure that women can take on and stay in leadership positions can include providing decision-makers with targeted gender training, adapting processes for selection and appointment of staff on committees, ensuring gender balance through gender quotas, and making committee membership more transparent.
The University’s ‘Belonging: Our Equity, Diversity and Inclusion Strategy’ encapsulates our strategic focus on equity, diversity and inclusion with ambitious objectives for change. It signals a deliberate move towards a fully integrated approach to equity, diversity and inclusion where structures and systems are aligned, and inclusive behaviours are recognised and rewarded. It articulates a clear direction and vision for the university and incorporates key performance indicators, including particular targets to improve the gender representation in leadership and management roles.
Critically reviewing selection procedures and remedying any biases can ensure that women and men get equal chances to develop and advance their careers. Establishing recruitment codes of conduct, involving gender equality officers in recruitment and promotion committees, proactively identifying women in underrepresented fields and considering organisation-wide workload planning models can be important measures to consider in a GEP.
A key part of our gender pay gap action plan is to ensure our recruitment and selection processes are without bias. This includes using gender neutral language in our job descriptions; using positive action statements in our job adverts; including multiple women shortlists and promotions; introducing transparency to promotion, pay and reward processes and communicate our family friendly and flexible working policies. The Executive Team has also agreed to implement the positive action provision, Section 159 of the Equality Act,2010. Our latest report can be found via the link below:
Our Women Professors Group (see below) also proactively support the career progression of female academics.
Women professors have formed a group to provide a range of academic leadership functions across the University of Gloucestershire. Our aim is to work together and with colleagues across the organisation, to advance the institution’s diversity agenda, to support the academic career development of other women and to provide a collegial space within which to meet and support each other. We are therefore connecting with the University of Gloucestershire’s Women’s Network and Human Resources in developing events and opportunities to mentor and share experiences of being and becoming academic leaders. In doing so we aim to provide support to fellow women academics during the process of application for promotion to Reader or Professor and to raise the profile of women academic leaders across the University.
The group is convened by Prof Ros Jennings and consists of all ten of the University’s women professors.
The GEP should consider how sex and gender analysis will be included in the research or educational outputs of an organisation. It can set out the organisation’s commitment to incorporating sex and gender in its research priorities, the processes for ensuring that the gender dimension is considered in research and teaching, and the support and capacity provided for researchers to develop methodologies that incorporate sex and gender analysis. Research funding and research performing organisations both have a role to play in ensuring this.
As a student-centred, learning-led university, we believe that the creation and application of new knowledge is fundamental to our mission. Our research and professional practice has impact for society and business, informing our curriculum and enhancing learning opportunities for our students. Our ethos and approach to research can be found on our website using this link:
Each of our academic schools contribute to our learning-led, research-informed environment.
We embed research in all our activities, ensuring students and staff benefit from and contribute to vibrant subject communities, engaged in fundamental and applied research. Our six Research Priority Areas build on our strengths and recognise the opportunities we have to contribute to contemporary challenges.
Organisations establishing a GEP should consider taking steps to ensure they have clear institutional policies on sexual harassment and other forms of gender-based violence. Policies should establish and codify the expected behaviour of employees, outline how members of the organisation can report instances of gender-based violence and how any such instances will be investigated and sanctions applied. They should also consider how information and support is provided to victims or witnesses and how the whole organisation can be mobilised to establish a culture of zero tolerance toward sexual harassment and violence.
The University is committed to providing a safe and supportive working environment in which employees and students are treated with dignity, respect and courtesy, and the contribution of all employees and students is valued. To support this, we have a staff Dignity and Respect at Work Policy which details our expected and appropriate behaviours, and the processes and sanctions that will be imposed if expected behaviours are not met. Alongside this we have an online harassment and bullying reporting process which enables staff to report anonymously and signposts them to support, both internal and external to the University. Staff and students are supported by Dignity Advisers who offer confidential advice and support; and staff can benefit from our Mental Wellbeing Facilitators if they are experiencing worries or distress, or just need someone to talk to. In addition, the University provides an Employee Assistance Programme.
The University also has clear policies and procedures in place for students