Closing the gap – a commitment to gender equality

As a leader in business education, we fundamentally believe that our identity must be characterised by mutual respect, and invigorated by diversity of perspectives and approaches.

 

As a leader in business education, we fundamentally believe that our identity must be characterised by mutual respect, and invigorated by diversity of perspectives and approaches.

Importantly, our commitment to gender equality and advancing women’s education is key to realising our mission and impact.

We recently celebrated another milestone in a long list of gender equity achievements. 2017 marks the fourth year of an ongoing partnership with the Australian National Committee for UN Women. The unique collaboration – launched as a joint effort to promote gender equality at the most senior levels of Australia’s public, corporate and non-for-profit sectors – has seen five female leaders receive a full scholarship for our MBA program, as well as internship placement opportunities for undergraduate students with UN Women NC Australia in Canberra.

This is also the first year the scholarship has been extended to our Global Executive MBA, with UN Women NC Australia endorsing the number one ranked program.

Notably, in 2015 our MBA program became the first in the country, and one of the first in the world, to admit more females than males – a considerable achievement considering women average between 30 and 35 percent of MBA participants.

Our stance and action towards greater equity is also evidenced in our leadership, research and teaching and learning.

In 2016 the Business School established a Board of Advice, with senior female leaders making up 50% of the group, including Karina Kwan, Group Support Services Finance, Financial Services, Commonwealth Bank of Australia; Arlene Tansey, Chairman, Non-Executive Director; Christine Yates, Executive General Manager, NAB Private; Suzanne Young, EGM Business Partnering, IAG; and Jo Burston, CEO and Founder, Rare Birds.

In the same year, Professor Marian Baird, Chair of Work and Organisational Studies and the Co-Director of the Women and Work Research Group, was made an Officer in the Order of Australia for her “distinguished service to higher education, and to women, particularly in the areas of workplace gender equality, parental leave policy and industrial relations, and to social justice.”

Marian established the Women and Work Research Group at the University in 2006. It was the first research centre of its kind at any university in Australia. The research group is now considered a key academic hub for students, practitioners and established academics from around the globe, providing a strong and positive influence on policy development.

This year, the group will expand its scope and research capacity to become the Women, Work and Leadership Research Group, due to substantial support from the Business School, with Associate Professor Rae Cooper, Associate Dean (Undergraduate Business) and another leading authority in the field of women and work, assuming position as Co-Director.

In our curriculum design, we are continually developing units to meet the changing demands of the business world and further embedding our values of diversity and inclusion into our teaching, such as the recently launched undergraduate units, The Future of Business and Leading and Influencing in Business.