Diversity Awards

Athena SWAN

The Athena SWAN Charter recognises commitment to the advancement of gender equality in academia, addressing unequal gender representation across academic disciplines, professional and support functions and removing the obstacles faced by women.

Gender equality sits at the core of the University of Aberdeen community. We are committed to ensuring there is a diverse, inclusive and empowering work and study atmosphere for all staff and students. We are proud to have our ongoing commitment to gender equality demonstrated by being one of the few University's to hold an Athena SWAN award in all departments. We have ambitious yet achievable plans in all areas of the University, to ensure we continue to advance gender equality and tackle barriers to women's careers.

Every School in the University now holds an Athena SWAN Bronze Award demonstrating our commitment to advancing gender equality.

For queries or support regarding Athena SWAN at the University of Aberdeen please contact:

Dr Rhiannon Thompson
Institutional Athena SWAN Officer

  • Institution
  • Schools of:
    • Business
    • Divinity, History and Philosophy
    • Education
    • Language, Literature, Music and Visual Culture
    • Law
    • Social Sciences

Dr Maria Grazia Cascio
Athena SWAN Coordinator

  • Schools of (and associated Institutes):
    • Medicine, Medical Sciences and Nutrition
    • Psychology
    • Biological Sciences
    • Natural and Computing Sciences
    • Engineering
    • Geosciences
To find out more information about Athena SWAN at the University of Aberdeen please visit our Athena SWAN section.

Launched in November 2013, the Leadership Foundation's women-only development programme was created to help combat the underrepresentation of women in senior leadership positions, as evidenced in their research.

Aurora is a leadership development initiative that combines education, mentoring and on-line resources to provide learning with a more enduring impact. Aurora provides an additional opportunity for women to influence their institutions and to develop leadership skills. The core areas Aurora will address are:

  • Understanding organisations and the sector
  • Developing leadership behaviours, skills and knowledge
  • Identifying and overcoming barriers and obstacles
  • Growing confidence and a leadership identity
  • Building networks, coalitions and support processes

These are addressed through a combination of development days, self-directed learning from on-line resources, cross-institutional action learning sets and in-house mentoring.

Aurora is for women up to senior lecturer and professional services equivalent, and participants will be asked to:

  • attend each of the four development days, and the action learning set day organised by participants in their assigned groups
  • undertake self-directed learning throughout the programme, aligned with developing interests and where time allows
  • commit to working with a mentor which is provided by their institution
  • and be prepared to participate in a longitudinal study to measure the impact of Aurora over time.
Download the Aurora Brochure Visit the Aurora website
Disability Confident

The University of Aberdeen is committed to attracting, growing and engaging with talented people from diverse backgrounds.

The University of Aberdeen is a certified Disability Confident Employer. Disability Confident is a government scheme designed to encourage those employers who have agreed to take a set of actions around the recruitment, retention and career development of disabled people and those with health conditions.

Being Disability Confident is a unique opportunity to lead the way in our community.

Race Equality Charter

The Advance HE Race Equality Charter provides a rigorous framework for analysing our progress and gaps on race equality and for setting progressive actions and targets.  The University signed up in 2019, committing us to the principles of the Charter and we are currently working on a Bronze submission

Visit our Race Equality pages

We participate in Britain’s good practice employers’ forum on sexual orientation, run by Stonewall, the charity that works for equality for lesbians, gay men, bisexuals and the trans community.

We are proud members of the Stonewall Diversity Champions programme, reinforcing:

  • our commitment to improving the workplace culture for lesbian, gay and bisexual employees
  • our recognition that people perform better when they can be themselves
Visit the Stonewall website

Diversity Events Archive

Diversity calendar

The Diversity Calendar shows the key UK and international dates for diversity and inclusion throughout the year. The calendar may help you when planning events or engaging with the University’s diverse staff and student population.

Black History Month 2020

Find out more about the extraordinary achievements of our Black alumni, both past and present, and read the views of our students and graduates on Black History Month.

Inclusion Week 2019

From 4-8 March 2019, the University held an exciting week of activities and events to celebrate the diverse staff and student communities on all its campuses, exchange ideas and promote the University’s commitment to inclusion.

The events were held in partnership with the Campus Trades Unions, the staff equality networks and the Aberdeen University Student Association. In total around 500 members of our community participated, either by attending events, watching them through the live stream option or by contributing to discussion.

International Women's Day 2021

International Women's Day which falls on the 8th of March each year, has been celebrated across the world since the early 1900's. Originally, its aim was to provide a forum for women to campaign for equality and women’s rights. Over time, it has evolved and now in March each year, thousands of events are held throughout the world to recognise the progress that has been made, to inspire women and to celebrate their achievements.