Recognising advancement of gender equality: representation, progression and success for all.
In June 2013, Trinity Centre for Gender Equality and Leadership (TCGEL) established a network of HEIs in Ireland and Northern Ireland along with key stakeholders, the Higher Education Authority (HEA); Science Foundation Ireland (SFI); Irish Research Council (IRC); Irish University Association (IUA) to explore the feasibility of pursuing the Athena SWAN process. The seven Irish Universities and stakeholders met first in October 2013 and now collaborate as the Athena SWAN Ireland Committee that made a joint proposal to the ECU for an extension of AS to the Irish HEI sector. This proposal led to the launch of the Athena SWAN Charter in Ireland in February 2015 by the Minister for Education and Skills, Ms. Jan O'Sullivan TD.
Trinity College currently holds an Institutional Bronze award, and three School Bronze awards for the Schools of Chemistry, Natural Sciences and Physics.
Background to the Athena SWAN Charter
The Athena SWAN Charter is a recognition and award scheme for positive gender practice in Higher Education, administered by the UK’s Equality Challenge Unit (ECU).
ECU’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 (STEMM) employment in higher education and research. The Charter evolved from work between the Athena Project and the Scientific Women’s Academic Network (SWAN), to advance the representation of women in science, technology, engineering, medicine and mathematics (STEMM).
In May 2015 the scope of ECU’s Athena SWAN Charter was expanded to cover gender equality in arts, humanities, social sciences, business and law disciplines. staff in professional and support roles, and for trans* staff and students. The Charter now recognises work undertaken to address gender equality more broadly, not just the barriers to progression that affect women.