School of Physics and Astronomy maintains awards status for recognising and promoting Equality and Diversity

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Staff from the School of Physics

The college of Engineering and Physical Sciences is delighted to announce that the School of Physics and Astronomy has maintained its Silver award status in the most recent Athena SWAN awards round, while also retaining its Champion level for the Institute of Physics project Juno awards.

The Athena SWAN charter is dedicated to recognising the advancement of gender equality, representation, progression and success for all. To achieve a Silver award the University of Birmingham School of Physics and Astronomy has proven that they work towards promoting gender equality while also identifying and addressing challenges specific to the department.  

To maintain their Silver award status, the school has also demonstrated that they have taken action in response to previously identified challenges and have successfully exemplified the impact of the actions implemented.

The project Juno awards recognise and reward physics departments, schools, institutes and organisations which can demonstrate they have taken action to address gender equality in physics and encourage better practice for all staff. To maintain their champion level status, the school of Physics and Astronomy have demonstrated that they have embedded six principles throughout the department and have shown they have an action plan in place to ensure consistent good practice.

Commenting on the schools success, Head of Physics and Astronomy, Professor Martin Freer said, "The School of Physics and Astronomy is extremely committed to creating an environment for work and study that is both rewarding and equitable. We have made significant strides in the last four to five years with an increase in the number of female academic staff and the number of staff who are working flexibly. This progress has been recognised through these awards, of which we are very proud. The School has developed an action plan to ensure that it is a place that continues to promote and embrace change."

Application lead, Chair of the Physics Equality and Diversity Committee and Professor in Particle Physics, Cristina Lazzeroni added, “We are extremely proud of this achievement and we are strongly committed to further promote equality and diversity because we recognise that diversity and equality of opportunities are key to the success for our staff and students. Our recent achievements include creating a wider culture of equality and diversity in the School, substantially enlarging the number of female academic staff, and increasing the number of flexible time workers.”

ENDS

Notes to editors

The University of Birmingham is ranked among the world’s top 100 institutions, its work brings people from across the world to Birmingham, including researchers and teachers and more than 6,500 international students from over 150 countries.

Advance Higher Education’s Athena SWAN Charter was established in 2005 to encourage and recognise commitment to advancing the careers of women in science, technology, engineering, maths and medicine employment in higher education and research. The Athena SWAN Charter is based on ten key principles. By being part of Athena SWAN, institutions are committing to a progressive charter; adopting these principles within their policies, practices, action plans and culture.

The Institute of Physics Juno initiative aims to address gender equality in physics and to encourage better practice for all staff, while also working towards developing an equitable working culture in which all students and staff can achieve their full potential.