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Gender equality

Gender equality

As the only university in Australia named after a woman, Edith Dircksey Cowan, at ECU we are deeply passionate and committed to achieving gender equality as an educator and employer. We believe universities have a crucial role in creating a relevant and responsive workforce which is able to meet, if not subvert, global challenges by removing the gender barriers faced by aspiring researchers, innovators and entrepreneurs. Not only does this recognise basic human rights, it improves our ability to develop organisational sustainability and national and global economic growth.

The ECU Strategic Plan 2017 – 2021 World Ready sets the direction and identifies ECU’s strong commitment to promoting equality, diversity, and social responsibility as a key strategic priority which we are implementing through our ECU Gender Equality Strategy 2019-2021. This Strategy captures our overall vision for gender equality and outlines our goals, actions and indicators of success.

Athena SWAN

As one of the first 15 Australian institutions to receive an inaugural Athena SWAN Bronze Institutional Award, ECU is proactively redressing gender inequalities and improving education and opportunities for women, particularly in Science, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics and Medicine (STEMM).

Development hub

At ECU, we pride ourselves on being inclusive, flexible and relevant to the real world. We celebrate the gender diversity and talent of ECU staff by offering dedicated support schemes to remove obstacles and enable career development and progression.

Our stories

Dr Charn Nang

Find out more about Charn and her career journey as an academic in the speech pathology disipline.

Dr Charn Nang

Mahbuba Rakhi

Rakhi is currently an engineering student and vice-president of the Women in Engineering at ECU.

Mahbuba Rakhi

Alecka Miles

ECU Athena SWAN Advancement Scheme Award recipient Alecka Miles talks about her new role as Course Coordinator for the Master of Paramedic Practitioner and returning back to work after parental breaks.

Alecka Miles

WGEA Employer of Choice for Gender Equality

ECU has achieved the Citation as an Employer of Choice for Gender Equality from the Workplace Gender Equality Agency (WGEA) for the fourth consecutive year. The citation recognises our long-standing commitment to creating an inclusive culture in which female staff participate equally at all levels.

Times Higher Education University Impact Rankings

ECU has been ranked in the top 4% of universities in the world for Gender Equality in the Times Higher Education (THE) University Impact Rankings in 2020. As a socially responsible organisation, we are exemplars in our community for sustainable practices. We are recognised for our work to redress inequalities through our commitment to the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).


ECU provides a number of gender equality related resources and information to inform staff and students at the University.


Athena SWAN Logo

Whole-of-University Athena SWAN Information Webinars

Thursday, 23 July 2020

As ECU seeks to achieve the newly announced Australian Athena SWAN Institutional Silver Award, information webinars will be held for all staff at ECU to have an opportunity to hear about ECU’s gender equality journey so far and ask any questions from university leaders.

ECU students nominated for the AWSN Women in Security Awards

Thursday, 23 July 2020

ECU Cyber Security students, Meidi van der Lee and Jacynta Grigson have been recognised by the Australian Women in Security Network (AWSN), a national network that aims to grow the number of women in the security community.

Women in STEM

ECU commits to preserving gender equity during COVID-19

Thursday, 02 July 2020

Edith Cowan University (ECU) is among the first universities in Australia, to become a signatory of a joint sector position statement on ‘Preserving Gender Equity as a Higher Education Priority During and After COVID-19’.



Assessing Achievement Relative to Opportunity at ECU - Live Q&A Event

Booking window has closed. Please contact the event organiser directly.

As part of our commitment to achieving gender equality, ECU is holding an online university-wide discussion on assessing achievement relative to opportunity.

Join this Microsoft Teams Live Event to hear the discussion and participate in the Q&A.

CEDA Women Leadership Series - the 'isms' of diversity

Committee for Economic Development of Australia - Women in Leadership Series

Valuing and respecting diversity of people (ages, cultural, gender and ability) creates an inclusive workplace which in return maximises and strengthens organisations. There is a growing recognition that leaders must drive inclusive behaviour, however it’s time to see results.

At this event we explore research and leading thinking on how we can design organisation-wide gender strategies, shift attitudes and behaviours, and engage others to effect real change.

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