Towards gender equity
Macquarie University launched its first Workplace Gender Equity Strategy on International Women’s Day 2017, setting out an ambitious action plan for real and sustainable change towards gender equity, diversity and inclusion. Our latest update Towards Gender Equity 2.0 details our gender equity priorities, progress to date and future plans.
Our bold vision is to lead the way for other universities and organisations, and society more generally, to create greater equality for all genders at work.
At Macquarie we take a broad and strategic approach to diversity and inclusion – focussed on building a workforce that truly reflects the diversity of our community, and creating an inclusive culture where everyone is respected, supported and progressing.
We know that to make real progress, we need to transform the traditional approach to gender equity. Our approach is to 'fix the system' - meaning we're focusing our attention on the policies, systems, processes and cultures that create and maintain inequality. This means changing the way we do things.
We ultimately want to see equality consistently reflected in the fabric of our University. Working with a shared purpose to create real change, our leaders and teams aim to proactively challenge gender stereotypes and biases, build pipelines to better harness talent, and remove systemic obstacles to genuine equality of opportunity.
Learn about our Gender Equity priorities, progress and future plans.
Our commitments and progress
Our commitment: Our people bring a rich diversity of skills, experiences, insights and interests to the University. We recognise that diversity and inclusion benefits every individual and the organisation as a whole. We are committed to building a culture in which every person has the opportunity to connect to a sense of purpose and contribute to the University in a meaningful way.
Read about our progress...
More than nine-hundred Macquarie staff attended a series of events held across campus to launch the Workplace Gender Equity Strategy in March 2017. Momentum has been sustained through Gender Equity Summits held every six months, and an annual Gender Equity Week program of events. We piloted a staff survey designed to better understand obstacles to diversity and inclusion, and we made changes to several HR policies and processes to make them more inclusive. We have focused on building inclusion into everything we do - for example, our Events and Protocol Team adopted inclusive guidelines for all events, and Group Marketing now regularly reports to the University Executive against targets for gender balance in internal and external media.
Our commitment: We value gender equality and recognise that it underpins the University’s success. We are all responsible for improving gender equity and inclusion at Macquarie. Members of the Executive Group will take personal responsibility for action and expect other leaders and managers to do the same.
Read about our progress...
Our Vice-Chancellor and all Executive Group members have introduced specific key performance indicators (KPIs) related to progressing gender equity within their portfolio. The Executive Group reports to the Gender Equity Strategy Committee (GESC) on their achievements against these KPI’s. The GESC monitors and provides regular updates on priorities and progress to the University community. Our Gender Equity Self-Assessment Team (GESAT) leads strategy implementation and has developed numerous change initiatives to improve inclusivity of University policies, processes and culture. Some faculties and departments have established diversity and inclusion committees to focus activity at the local level.
Our commitment: Women are significantly under-represented in some academic disciplines at Macquarie. We need to attract more women to work in these roles and areas. We will work to better understand and align our career offerings to meet the interests and expectations of talented and capable academic women.
Read about our progress...
We reviewed each stage of our recruitment process and piloted a range of initiatives to mitigate bias, including the use of inclusive language and images in advertisements, anonymising applications at long-listing stage, and implementation of training for hiring managers that promotes inclusion and gender equity in recruitment. We proactively sought to reach a more diverse candidate pool for roles where women are significantly under-represented, with a positive impact on application rates and increased appointments of women in a number of areas, most significantly in our School of Engineering where representation of academic women increased to 25% (from 5%). We also introduced new requirements for external search firms to have a gender balanced longlist for senior appointments.
Our commitment: We lose talented women during their careers, which creates gender imbalance at our senior management and leadership levels. We will address the barriers faced by women in building a successful career at Macquarie and recognise, nurture and promote our female talent for success.
Read about our progress...
Macquarie’s new Academic Promotions process, implemented in 2017, was designed to expand the diversity of criteria by which people can be promoted, and better reflect activities and behaviours that are specifically valued and rewarded by the University. Under the 2018 Enterprise Agreement, three academic job families were introduced to enable more inclusive career pathways. A 40/40/20 representation model was applied to Macquarie Research Fellowships to ensure that a minimum 40% of recipients are women. The Early Career Researcher (ECR) Network supports researcher development towards Level C and above; helping to address key issues in our pipeline, and ensures a diversity in speakers, events and on their organising committee. Macquarie women participated in the ‘Superstars of STEMM’ - Science and Technology Australia development and recognition program. The University’s new Inspire six-month development program for managers was designed to embed inclusive leadership principles, and the majority of participants in the pilot were women.
We implemented an updated flexible work policy and procedure, and developed tools and resources for managers and staff to increase opportunities for flexible work. Provisions in the 2018 Academic and Professional Staff Enterprise Agreements ensure the right to return to work part-time from parental leave, twenty days Domestic Violence Leave, and parental leave for surrogates. The costs of caring responsibilities were added as an allowable expense within Macquarie University grants and fellowships. Part-time scholarships are now available for Higher Degree Research (HDR) students returning from parental leave, and the Primary Carer Conference Support Scheme is in place to assist staff who have family responsibilities to present at academic conferences. Changes were made to eligibility criteria for the Macquarie University Restart Grant to be more inclusive of early career researchers. The Faculty of Science and Engineering also launched a Research Fellowship for staff returning from parental leave. Property upgraded the University’s parenting rooms, and Campus Life commenced planning for a new forty-five place childcare centre on campus.
We have conducted two gender pay gap reviews since the launch of the Workplace Gender Equity Strategy. The University’s commitment to an end-to-end process of addressing pay equity is reflected in the 2018 Academic and Professional Staff Enterprise Agreements with specific actions on annual reporting of salary data to the Gender Equity Strategy Committee and University Executive. In recent examples of loading reviews and determination at both Faculty and individual level, loadings have been adjusted to ensure equity between men and women.
Gender Equity Strategy Committee
Our work in building a culture of equity is led by members of our Gender Equity Strategy Committee, who monitor and provide regular updates on priorities and progress to the University community.
Professor Sakkie Pretorius
Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Research) and Co-Chair
Director of Human Resources and Co-Chair
Manager, Workplace Diversity and Inclusion
Professor Lesley Hughes
Pro Vice-Chancellor, (Research Integrity and Development), Distinguished Professor of Biological Science
Professor Barbara Messerle
Executive Dean, Faculty of Science and Engineering
Professor Anne Ross-Smith
Associate Dean, Curriculum and Quality Assurance, Faculty of Business and Economics
Professor Johanna Westbrook
Director, Centre for Health Systems and Safety Research, Australian Institute of Health Innovation
Gender Equity Self-Assessment Team
Our Gender Equity Self-Assessment Team (GESAT) leads strategy implementation and has developed numerous change initiatives to improve inclusivity of University policies, processes and culture.
|Izzy de Allende||Workplace Diversity & Inclusion Coordinator|
|Albert Atkin||Senior Lecturer, Department of Philosophy|
|Nicholas Badcock||Senior Research Fellow, Department of Cognitive Science|
|Nicole Matthews||Senior Lecturer, Department of Media, Music, Communication and Cultural Studies|
|Leigh Boucher||Senior Lecturer, Department of Modern History, Politics & International Relations|
|Pete Boyle||CEO, U@MQ|
|Emily Brennan||Project Manager, DVC Research|
|Maria Dahm||Research Fellow, Centre for Health Systems and Safety Research|
|Judith Dawes||Professor, Department of Physics and Astronomy|
|Joanne Dawson||Lecturer, Department of Physics and Astronomy|
|Saveria Dimasi||Vice-President University Services and Strategy|
|Thom Dixon||Research Engagement and Impact Coordinator, DVR Research|
|Neil Durrant||Faculty General Manager, Faculty of Arts|
|Matthew Finkbeiner||Associate Professor, Department of Cognitive Science|
|Louise Fleck||Director, Research Services|
|Nicole Gower||Director, Human Resources|
|Jo Hatton||Manager, Workplace Diversity and Inclusion|
|Mariella Herberstein||Professor & Chair of University Senate, Department of Biology|
|Lesley Hughes||Pro Vice-Chancellor (Research Integrity and Development)|
|Harriet Jones||Workplace Diversity and Inclusion Consultant|
|Rachel Kallen||Associate Professor, Department of Psychology|
|Candace Lang||Professor, Department of Engineering|
|Mauricio Marrone||Senior Lecturer, Department of Accounting and Corporate Governance|
|Richard McDermid||ARC Future Fellow, Department of Physics and Astronomy|
|Rebecca Mitchell||Professor, Department of Management|
|Todd Phillips||Indigenous Workforce Development Coordinator, PVC (Indigenous Strategy)|
|Ronika Power||Associate Professor, Department Ancient History|
|Anina Rich||Professor, Department of Cognitive Science|
|Alison Rodger||Head of Department, Department of Molecular Science|
|Katrina Sealey||Head of Research Data and Software, Australian Astronomical Optics|
|Lan Snell||Associate Professor, Academic Program Director, Global MBA|
|Stuart Upton||Programs and Pathways Manager, PVC (Programs & Pathways)|
|Johanna Westbrook||Professor, Director of Centre for Health Systems and Safety Research|
Science in Australia Gender Equity (SAGE)
To support our progress towards gender equity at Macquarie, we have signed up to be part of the SAGE Athena SWAN Pilot, along with 40 other Australian universities and research institutes. The Athena SWAN requires us to understand and interrogate our own context and gendered dynamics in relation to recruitment, retention, progression and university culture.
The Athena SWAN charter was first developed in the UK in 2005 – universities and departments can apply for Bronze, Silver or Gold awards recognising progress and impact. The The SAGE pilot (supported by the Australian Academy of Science in partnership with the Australian Academy of Technology and Engineering) is adapting the Athena SWAN charter in Australia. All institutions in the pilot are applying for a Bronze award, and Macquarie is due to submit our application in March 2019. To be successful at Bronze level, we must understand and reflect on our own progress and areas for improvement in relation to gender equity, and develop a 4-year action plan to address issues identified.
The SAGE pilot focuses on STEMM disciplines (science, technology, engineering, mathematics and medicine) as women are underrepresented in these areas at a national level. However, at Macquarie, we are using the Athena SWAN charter as a mechanism to inform our progress towards gender equity across the university. While there may be issues specific to STEMM disciplines that we will aim to address, the majority of actions and initiatives that are developed will be implemented across the university to ensure everyone benefits from this process.
Workplace Gender Equality Agency reports
In line with the Workplace Gender Equality Act 2012, Macquarie submits its public report with the Workplace Gender Equality Agency. All universities are required to submit their reports by 31 July each year.
The 2017-2018 Workplace Gender Equality Agency Report is now available to be viewed. Macquarie University employees are invited to provide comments on the report to Jo Hatton, Manager, Workplace Diversity and Inclusion, by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org. All comments are confidential. If you have any issue with the accessibility of this report, please contact Jo Hatton.