Athena Swan Impact Evaluation: In August 2019, Advance HE published an impact evaluation of Athena Swan, conducted by Ortus Economic Research and Loughborough University. The evaluation examines the effectiveness of Athena SWAN and provides robust evidence to feed into the ongoing Athena Swan Review. Key findings include:
- 70% of higher education providers in the UK have engaged with the Athena SWAN Charter.
- A wide range of impacts around gender balance have been reported. These include an increase in the number and proportion of women in academic and research posts, from the most junior to the most senior.
- The charter is most effective as a tool to ensure that practices and policies present no disadvantage to any member of staff or student, targeting cultural change.
- There is strong evidence that the charter processes and methodologies have supported cultural and behavioural change – not just around gender equality, but equality and diversity in all its forms.
- Considerable challenges which threaten ongoing engagement, including resource and data requirements, workload and lack of leadership support.