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Recognising the advancement of gender equality: representation, progression and success for all

Workshop for Professional and Support Staff in the Department of Psychiatry
Workshop for Professional and Support Staff in the department: benefiting from the talents of all

Athena SWAN Silver Award

Our department is committed to the advancement of equality, diversity and inclusion and the principles of Athena SWAN are embedded throughout the culture of the Department.  Our Athena SWAN Silver award was renewed in October 2018, in recognition of the impact of our work driving forward the development and implementation of practical steps twoards the advancement of equality.  

The self-assessment process and feedback from departmental staff and students has led to many changes in the way the department operates, including:

  • Restructuring department communications
  • Establishing a Staff Development Fund to provide additional funding for staff training
  • Improving department inductions
  • Increasing support for researchers applying for funding
  • Introducing Bullying and Harassment Advisors
  • Broadening the focus of our Equality, Diversity and Inclusion work
  • Running regular career development seminars for Professional and Support Staff and Early Career Researchers

Athena SWAN Charter

The Athena SWAN Charter was established in 2005 to encourage and recognise commitment to the advancement of women's careers in science, engineering and technology subjects in academia.  Athena SWAN awards celebrate good practice in the recruitment, retention and promotion of women in higher education institutions and their individual departments. 

In May 2015 the charter was expanded to cover women (and men where appropriate) in professional and support roles, and for trans staff and students in relation to their representation, progression of students into academia, journey through career milestones, working environment for all staff. For further information about Athena SWAN, please visit the ECU website

Athena SWAN Self-Assessment Team

Our department's Self Assessment Team (SAT) are responsible for for identifying ways to enhance working life for all staff and students and encouraging engagement and inclusion.  The SAT is chaired by Susannah Murphy and meets six times a year. 

We keep staff and students updated on the progress of the Athena SWAN process via presentations at the departmental away day and as part of the Research Meeting programme, by email and website updates, and at the weekly Head of Department briefing.  We encourage staff and students to become involved in the process and welcome feedback and ideas at any time. 

Details of current members of the Athena SWAN SAT are here

Terms of Reference of the Athena SWAN Self-Assessment Team can be seen here

The results of our 2018 staff survey report can be found here.

Download our Athena SWAN Silver Application here (October 2018)

Download our current Athena SWAN Action Plan here (as of June 2021)

Hear more about Athena SWAN in the Department of Psychiatry in this short film:


Athena SWAN Working Groups

The Athena SWAN SAT is supported by a number of working groups (WGs), recruited from the wider Department with at least one SAT member on each. These WGs divide the workload amongst SAT members and engage the Department more fully in the Athena SWAN process. Each WG assesses, consults, prioritises, plans and implements actions within their topic areas, identifies survey items and reviews responses. They meet at least termly.

Click here for more information about the working groups

If you would be interested in joining one of the working groups please contact Susannah Murphy (


Athena SWAN Working Groups Working Group Chairs
Academic Career

Laurence Hunt

Jessica Scaife

Departmental Culture

Erdem Pulcu

Professional and Support Staff Moira Westwood
Family and Part time working

Angharad de Cates

Laura Winchester

Graduate Studies

Tracy Lindsey

Race Equality

Catherine Harmer


For more information about the activities of the working groups, please click on the links below: