Athena Swan

Athena Swan promotes and supports the careers of women in Science, Engineering and Technology (STEM), and aims to address gender inequalities and imbalance in these disciplines and, in particular, the under-representation of women in senior roles.

Tuesday, 9 December 2014

In the news - Equality, diversity and inclusion

The Science Council, the umbrella organisation for UK learned and professional societies, recently signed a Declaration to promote equality, diversity and inclusion amongst its members. The Geological Society of London is amongst them, and has now appointed a diversity champion (Tricia Henton) to establish a current baseline and drive good practice in the future. This month's Soapbox in the Geoscientist magazine introduces Tricia and outlines her plans for the next year - as well as inviting feedback from the wider Fellowship.

We are aware that the Society has very little baseline data against which to measure success. We were surprised to find that a group of professional institutions and major geosciences employers all collect substantially more information from members and employees than we do, allowing them to monitor their progress more easily. So, one of the first changes we propose is to put in place effective diversity monitoring - a legal requirement in the public, and standard practice in large parts of the private, sector (subject, of course, to the requirements of data security and confidentiality). 
Good communications are vital to promoting change. We want all of you, the Fellowship and stakeholders, to contribute your views on how well we currently present ourselves.  Do we foster the feeling of being an ‘inclusive’ Society? Do we cater for and adequately support differences of gender, ethnicity, age, sexual preference and physical ability? Our Vice President for Regional Groups has already volunteered to provide feedback from them. Many of their members are employed by a wide range of companies and public sector bodies whose experience will be helpful and relevant.

Read more here.

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