An Examination of the Athena SWAN Initiatives in the UK: Critical Reflections

  • Maria TsouroufliEmail author
Part of the Palgrave Studies in Gender and Education book series (GED)


Athena SWAN is an equality charter for universities and research institutions, managed by the Equality Challenge Unit (ECU) in the UK. This chapter discusses the evolution and development of the scheme since its inception as well as some of its successes and challenges within the neoliberal and commercialised context of higher education. It offers good examples of institutional and departmental projects by award holders, as well as critical reflections on the charter. This chapter raises interesting questions about the effectiveness of gender equality certification process in eradicating sexism in academia and creating gender and other inequities.


Athena SWAN Gender equality Sexism Higher education 


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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Faculty of Education Health and WellbeingUniversity of WolverhamptonWolverhamptonUK

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