Skip to main content

Both Mathematics and Computer Science have been awarded a coveted Athena SWAN Silver departmental award.

Silver celebration: National award recognises commitment to equality

The University of Exeter’s Mathematics and Computer Science departments’ commitment to gender equality have been recognised through a prestigious national award scheme.

The Athena SWAN awards are bestowed on institutes and departments that can demonstrate a meaningful and ongoing commitment to working towards this cause.

Both Mathematics and Computer Science, part of Exeter’s College of Engineering, Mathematics and Physical Sciences, have been awarded a coveted Athena SWAN Silver departmental award, announced today (Thursday, 6 October).

Professor Ken Evans, Pro-Vice-Chancellor and Executive Dean of the College, said: “I am both delighted and extremely proud that we have achieved this award, which recognises the commitment of all our colleagues within the College to ensure that women are properly represented and supported to achieve their full potential.

“It is an unhappy fact that women are still under-represented in science worldwide, and there is more work to be done to ensure this is properly rectified. The Athena SWAN charter, and the dedication of those who support it, is an important factor in redressing this balance. To receive this award is a positive confirmation that we are committed to providing the right environment to ensure women are encouraged and supported throughout their chosen fields and careers.”

Jon Sykes, the undergraduate Athena SWAN committee member, said: “It was really inspiring to be part of a group which aimed to improve work place, especially with the goal of achieving gender equality as a minimum, using an information based approach.”

Professor Mark Baldwin, Head of Mathematics, said “We believe in creating an inclusive working environment that will attract the best students and academics from all over the world. The way we achieve this is through constant re-evaluation of how we do things; through constantly asking how we can do better and how we can be fairer and more supportive; and by recognising those who help us achieve our aspirations. ”

Professor Richard Everson, Head of Computer Science, said “This award is an important recognition of the efforts in Maths, Computer Science, and across the College to address the gender imbalance and advance the careers of women. It is a clear signal of our continuing commitment to gender equality and inclusivity for students and staff alike.”

The University of Exeter has already been bestowed with four Silver awards by the Athena Swan programme, with the Medical School, Sport & Health Sciences, CLES Cornwall and Psychology already holding the honour.

Launched in 2005, the Athena SWAN Charter recognises commitment to gender equality in Science, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics and Medicine (STEMM).

The University of Exeter has been a member of the Athena SWAN Charter since 2011 and gained its Bronze institutional award in 2012.

Date: 6 October 2016

Read more University News