About the Network
During the past few years, there has been a significant effort by the University to become a Employer of Choice for Women through a range of measures including new policies and practices around maternity and parental leave, carers’ leave, monitoring academic promotions, providing support for research development and early career to name a few.
However we still have a way to go in terms of ensuring that women are able to be rewarded and promoted on equal terms as men. For this to occur, academic women need the opportunity to participate in a supportive network to:
- gain as much information as possible
- share their knowledge with others located horizontally and vertically within the University
- engage in problem solving
- advance career development and support
- enhance personal and skill development
- participate in mentoring, and
- receive the benefits of active sponsorship.
Women are under-sponsored and coaching is not always affordable or easy to work into a daily schedule and so women often miss out. A network relies on voluntary participation and agreement between the mentor and mentee. Through the mentoring program we offer, and the support of the network, there will be greater opportunities for women to excel in their chosen fields, and increasing ways to overcome the current barriers in the workplace.
Barriers for female academics in the workplace
University policies are not always implemented in a way that lets women maximise their full benefit. This is important as gender issues institutionally and in the workplace arise from differences in the way men and women are treated as a precursor and outcome.
The absence of mentoring, sponsoring, social networking and role models make advancement for women tougher. For example, women’s experience, performance and roles are often not evaluated in the same way as those of men and they are therefore less likely to be given high profile roles, projects or challenging tasks.
Moreover, they are not sponsored through their career in the same way that men tend to be through strong, interlinked and targeted networks. Women have had to fight to enter most of these hitherto male networks and they are succeeding. They face numerous difficulties in career advancement and this includes well educated women with many years of experience, not just those starting out. Barriers include:
- gender discrimination
- glass ceiling
- stereotyping of pregnant and breastfeeding women
- work–life balance
- lack of mentoring
- conflicting roles
- pay inequality.
All of these can prevent women from obtaining work equality, promotions and being considered for senior leadership, management or board positions. Our network is aimed at women mentoring and sponsoring each other to overcome institutional and workplace barriers.
A look at the current statistics for the distribution of female academic staff at the University shows the discrepancy in male and female staff members at the highest levels.
Female academic staff as a percentage of total academic staff (by faculty of DVC portfolio) as at 31 August 2012
(FTE excludes casual staff)
|DVCs and teams||32.10||43.25||75.35||42.60|
Female academic staff as a percentage of total academic staff (by level) as at 31 August 2012
(FTE excludes casual staff)
|Faculty/administrative portfolio||Level||Female||Male||Total||Female as % of total|
|Total||Level D & E||260.05||626.34||886.39||29.3|
|Total||Levels A, B & C||910.97||993.40||1904.37||47.8|
|Total||Levels A to E||1171.03||1619.74||2790.77||42.0|
Female Level D & E Academic staff represent 9.3% of all academic staff.
Female Level A, B & C Academic staff represent 32.6% of all academic staff.
Average actual academic salary and gender salary gap as at 31 August 2012
|Occupation classification||Female average actual salary as % of male average actual salary||% gender actual salary gap|
Vice-Chancellor & Principal
Senior Executive Group
|Professor (Level E)||99.77||.23|
|Associate Professor (Level D)||96.78||3.22|
|Senior Lecturer (Level C)||94.55||5.45|
|Lecturer (Level B)||93.39||6.61|
|Associate Lecturer (Level A)||86.88||13.12|