The University of Melbourne has had a public and active commitment to equal opportunity for women since 1988. Whilst this has led to improvements in gender equity, historic and current barriers within the University environment continue to restrict opportunities for women academic and general staff to reach their full potential. As a result, women remain underrepresented at senior academic levels and in senior decision-making positions across almost all Faculties and Departments.
The Equal Employment Opportunity for Women Plan, 2000 - 2005 (.pdf, also available in .doc format) was designed to move the University towards its goal of becoming one of the finest universities in the world. The plan sets out a range of goals and targets, addressing recognised barriers to women’s inclusion and full participation in the University. The University’s Staff Equity and Diversity Framework 2008 – 2012 (.pdf) describes the steps we will take to create an inclusive, multicultural and humanitarian work environment at the University of Melbourne. Gender equity is a key priority issue in the Framework.
The Framework also recognizes that success depends on universal adoption of its goals and targets, and the development of plans and strategies at Faculty/Division and Department level. A range of Faculty-based committees, networks and individuals facilitate this involvement at the local level. For more information about EO in your faculty, see the University Network for Equal Opportunity (UNEO, formerly EOWW).
- The Academic Women in Leadership Program recognises that women are under-represented in higher level academic appointments, and provides an intensive and valuable development opportunity. The program targets academic women who have the potential and the intention to progress to senior leadership and decision making positions in the University. The program has been run successfully since 1997-1998.
- The document Creating the E/Quality Workplace: A Guide for Heads of Departments on Implementing Equal Opportunity for Women in the Workplace (.pdf) has been developed by the Faculty EOWW Network together with the EO Unit as a resource to assist Heads in improving practices and raising performance in their departments. The Guide was developed in consultation with Heads and other senior academics including participants in the Head Start and Headway programs in 2004.
The University has been recognised for its policies and practices in relation to the employment of women by receiving the Employer of Choice for Women citation from the Equal Opportunity for Women in the Workplace Agency for many years running.