This page provides a concise overview of how the University of East Anglia (UEA) fulfils the specific criteria outlined in the Gender Equality Plan for securing funding through the Horizon Europe EU research and innovation framework programme.

Designed as a reference for external organisations, it also serves as a valuable resource for UEA researchers seeking guidance on relevant funding applications. For additional details on these initiatives, UEA staff members are encouraged to reach out to the Equality Diversity, Inclusion and Wellbeing Team. Comprehensive information about our research and innovation activities can be found on the UEA Research and Innovation Service webpages.

The UEA is steadfast in its commitment to ensuring and championing gender equality, primarily articulated in our Athena Swan submissions. We align our efforts with the requirements of the Horizon Europe Gender Equality Plan (GEP).

*Some of the links within this page accesses content not on our public facing webpages, and thus limits its access to staff and students.


University of East Anglia fulfilment

Be a public document

The GEP should be a formal document signed by the top management and disseminated within the institution. It should demonstrate a  commitment to gender equality, set clear goals and detailed actions and measures to achieve them.

The University of East Anglia is a proud participant in the Advance HE Athena Swan Charter, holding a Silver Award since April 2019. Our history includes receiving Bronze and Bronze Renewal Awards in 2012 and 2015, respectively.

Our institutional Athena Swan application and action plan, endorsed by our Vice-Chancellor, are accessible online. Department-specific applications and action plans, signed by the Head of School, are distributed to all staff. These plans underscore our dedication to gender equality, outlining clear objectives through SMART (Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant, and Time-bound) actions.

We're pleased that each of our Schools of study have received either Bronze Awards (15) or Silver Awards (6).

Have dedicated resources

Resources for the design, implementation, and monitoring of GEPs may include funding for specific positions such as Equality Officers or Gender Equality Teams as well as earmarked working time for academic, management and administrative staff.

At our university, we have a dedicated Equality, Diversity, Inclusion, and Wellbeing (EDI) Team led by experienced practitioners overseen by the Head of Equality, Diversity, and Inclusion. They manage the overall gender equality initiatives, and their webpage offers valuable resources.

Our university maintains various EDI policies, accessible on our external webpages.

The Executive Team features an Equality, Diversity, and Inclusion Lead, currently a Pro-Vice-Chancellor from the Arts and Humanities faculty. This Lead chairs the University Equality, Diversity, and Inclusion Committee, reporting directly to the University Executive Team. Collaborating closely with the Head of Equality, Diversity, and Inclusion, this Lead oversees the University's Athena Swan work through the Committee.

Each School within the University integrates an Athena Swan/Equality, Diversity, and Inclusion Committee into its departmental structure. An academic Athena Swan Lead is appointed in each School, with their role incorporated into the School’s Workload Allocation Model. Designated time is allocated based on the EDI Frameworks Core Principles, approved by the Equality, Diversity, and Inclusion Committee and the Executive Team. The academic lead at each School drives the implementation of School-level Athena Swan action plans. Additionally, each Faculty Pro-Vice-Chancellor serves on the University Equality, Diversity, and Inclusion Committee.

To foster best practices across the university, all Athena Swan Leads participate in a University Athena Swan Frameworks Group.

We have designed a toolkit to assist our Schools in understanding the advice, information, and resources available to support their Athena Swan activities. This toolkit aims to streamline workload for colleagues across UEA, enhance accessibility, share best practices, and provide agile updates to Schools.

Include arrangements for data collection and monitoring

GEPs must be evidence-based and founded on sex or gender-disaggregated baseline data collected across all staff categories. This data should inform the GEP’s objectives and targets, indicators, and ongoing evaluation of progress.

We compile and disclose sex/gender disaggregated data on both staff and students through various avenues, including:

  1. Annual Gender Pay Gap Report

  2. Equal Pay Reviews

  3. Our People – Annual Workplace Reports

  4. Institutional and Departmental Data Dashboards featuring disaggregated data on headcounts, professional staff groups, recruitment, promotions, and parental leave.

  5. University of East Anglia’s Access and
    Participation Plan

  6. Student and staff statistics, which are
    gathered annually and accessible through HESA.

In addition, we have Report and Support, a platform designed to collect information on incidents of assault, harassment, and hate experienced by staff, students, and visitors. This information is utilised to provide support, guidance, and identify preventative measures to minimise incidents. The platform also offers access to support resources, and data is reported at the Changing the Culture Working Group.

The Head of Equality, Diversity, and Inclusion conducts Equality Impact Assessments (EIAs) for specific exercises such as the University’s submission to REF21 (the most recent Research Excellence Framework assessment). These EIAs contribute to shaping future activities, increasing awareness, and identifying training needs.

Be supported by training and capacity-building

Actions may include developing gender competence and tackling unconscious gender bias among staff, leaders, and decision-makers, establishing working groups dedicated to specific topics, and raising awareness through workshops and communication activities.

The University’s Equality, Diversity, Inclusion, and Wellbeing Team is responsible for maintaining our EDI webpages, which encompass our policies and guidance.

Upon commencement of employment, all staff are required to undergo mandatory EDI training, with subsequent refresher courses every 2 years. Staff engaged in recruitment also undergo recruitment and selection training every 2 years, incorporating elements of unconscious bias awareness.

Both staff and students have access to LinkedIn Learning, where a variety of wellbeing and EDI pathways have been established.

Our Organisational Development and Professional Learning Team, led by a Head of Organisational Development and Professional Learning, comprises skilled trainers who have developed toolkits to support professional development. They also oversee our participation in a range of external leadership programmes.

EDI and Unconscious Bias Training has been provided for researchers involved in REF21 and for individuals holding managerial and decision-making roles.

Requirement University of East Anglia fulfilment

Work-life balance and organisational culture

This is covered in the Departmental Athena Swan applications and within the Institutional application.

Gender balance in leadership and decision-making

This is covered in the Departmental Athena Swan applications and within the Institutional application.

Gender equality in recruitment and career progression

This is covered in the Departmental Athena Swan applications and within the Institutional application.

We actively promote gender equality throughout the recruitment process, as evident in our recruitment documents, including the Recruitment and Selection Guidance.

Integration of the gender dimension into research and teaching content

This is covered in the Departmental Athena Swan applications and within the Institutional application.

Measures against gender-based violence including sexual harassment

We utilise the Report and Support platform to collect information on incidents of assault, harassment, and hate experienced by staff, students, and visitors. This data is instrumental in providing support, guidance, and identifying preventive measures to minimise such incidents. The platform also grants access to support and resources, with reported data being discussed at the Changing the Culture Working Group.

Additionally, the University maintains a Dignity and Respect in the Workplace Policy along with accompanying Briefing Notes available online, addressing issues of harassment.


  • UEA Strategy 2030 outlines our mission, vision for 2030, the areas where we aim to make a difference, and the values guiding our actions. Through extensive consultation with students, staff, alumni, and external stakeholders, we have shaped our vision and aspirations.

  • The UEA Research Culture Group, established in 2022 and chaired by the ProVice-Chancellor (Research and Innovation) (PVC-RI), focuses on initiatives to foster a productive and vibrant research environment rooted in EDI principles.

  • UEA’s Flexible Working Guidelines, aligned with sector best practices, affirm the right of all employees to request flexible working or periods of unpaid leave. We are dedicated to ensuring that such arrangements do not hinder career development or progression.

  • Staff with caring responsibilities can benefit from shared parental/dependents leave, and the campus hosts a multi-cultural nursery providing care for children from six weeks old. A salary-sacrifice scheme aids in covering the costs of nursery places.

  • Introduced by the Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences in 2013 and now extended to all Faculties, the Return to Work Funds offer financial support for those with caregiving responsibilities or returning from extended absences. These funds also assist academic staff with additional childcare expenses related to conferences or fieldwork.

  • 'Moving On in your Academic Career' is a workshop tailored for female researchers and those returning from career breaks, consistently receiving positive feedback.

  • The PVC-RI is responsible for ensuring UEA adheres to the principles of the Concordat to Support the Career Development of Research Staff. UEA has a detailed Concordat Implementation Plan, outlining support for the personal, professional, and career development of research staff.

  • UEA earned the HR Excellence in Research' Award in September 2012, recognising our commitment to implementing the principles of the Concordat. Since May 2018, these initiatives have been closely integrated with Athena Swan, enhancing synergistic positive action and change.

  • UEA has also signed the Technician Commitment (2018) to bolster the visibility, recognition, career development, and sustainability of research technicians within our research environment.

  • Feedback from the REF21 panels in 2022 commended UEA for proactive support for PGR students and staff across all stages, particularly in terms of EDI, especially gender, across multiple units of assessment.

  • QS Ranking Result. In June 2023, UEA returned to the world’s top 300 universities according to the 2024 QS (Quacquarelli Symonds) World University Rankings. This evaluates the impact of around 1,500 higher education institutions worldwide, with UEA’s position of joint 295th putting it in the top 20% globally. The result was a rise of 47 places for UEA year on year and represents the University’s highest QS World University Rankings position for five years. The table measures institutional performance across several research and educational responsibilities, including research and discovery, employability and outcomes, learning experience, global engagement, and a new sustainability metric.

  • Launch of Civic Charter. In October 2023, UEA officially launched its Civic Charter, which outlines how the University will work with and support communities to find solutions to the many complex challenges society faces. Celebrating UEA’s 60th anniversary, the new Civic Charter invites businesses, organisations, and individuals from all sectors to engage with UEA and create opportunities for new projects and collaborations. The Charter was created with input from a series of public discussions and events held across Norfolk and Suffolk, focusing on what a ‘civic university’ should look like, how it should behave, what it should prioritise, and how it should create impact, here and globally.

  • Launch of HealthUEA. In November 2023, UEA launched 'HealthUEA', the University’s third strategic research theme. Following the successful development of 'ClimateUEA' and 'CreativeUEA', this important third research theme was created as a response to an awareness of the growing health challenges at a local, national, and global level. The launch provides us with greater opportunities to showcase our inspirational, world-leading health research and further strengthens UEA’s strategic approach to interdisciplinary research and its capacity to connect across themes.

  • Expansion of Eastern Arc. In January 2024, The University of Sussex joined UEA, the University of Essex and the University of Kent to become the fourth member of the Eastern ARC (Academic Research Consortium). The four universities have signed a Memorandum of Understanding that will support joint working in research, education, innovation, knowledge exchange, training, and equipment sharing. In recent years Eastern ARC has supported the development of a positive research culture, opening training across the consortium, launching an Imaging Platform Alliance, and establishing an innovative mentoring scheme that has matched over 230 academics, technicians, and professional services staff for their professional development.

  • Engaging and vibrant Candidate Brochures have been crafted to attract and motivate potential candidates to apply for roles. The language and visuals within these materials have been thoughtfully selected to actively promote diversity and inclusion.

  • The Resourcing Team has integrated a "Check my Job Tool" into the recruitment process, identifying and addressing gender bias in text to encourage gender neutral language.

  • Diverse advertising platforms, including social media, are now employed to broaden the applicant pool and target specific audiences where positive action is necessary.

  • Various guidance documents have been developed for both managers and candidates to support them throughout the recruitment process. This encompasses Guidance for Applicants on completing the application form, Guidance for Shortlisted Applicants offering valuable tips for interview preparation, including considerations for virtual and in-person interviews. The language and imagery in all recruitment documentation are carefully chosen to advocate for diversity and inclusion. The guidance for virtual interviews also prompts managers to consider online interviews for candidates declaring a disability, as this setting may foster greater comfort.

  • A Welcome Brochure has been devised for new starters, furnishing useful information about UEA and the surrounding area. It includes an EDI section spotlighting staff networks, their benefits, and University Awards, such as Athena Swan, with a link to the Equality, Diversity, Inclusion, and Wellbeing pages.

  • Resourcing My UEA Pages have been created to offer comprehensive information about the entire recruitment process, serving as a centralised hub for all guidance, resources, and links to EDI-related materials.

  • The launch of the “Careers at UEA” site aims to showcase opportunities across the University and features an internal section exclusively for staff opportunities. This section emphasises the development of staff potential, career prospects, and the retention of key talent.

  • In August 2022, advert text was revised to actively promote flexible working, encouraging a broader range of candidates. The updated language now states, "UEA offers a variety of flexible working options. Although this role is advertised as full-time, we welcome applications from individuals seeking flexible working patterns, including annualised hours, compressed working hours, part-time, job share, term-time only, and/or hybrid working. Preferred hours should be indicated in the personal statement and will be discussed further at the interview."

  • An Applicant Tracking System (ATS) was implemented in July 2023, automating the end-to-end recruitment process to attract, engage, recruit, and onboard professional and academic talent efficiently. This system streamlines the process, reducing time to hire, cost per hire, and enhancing the user and candidate experience. The ATS possesses the capability to cross-check text for a wider range of biases and anonymise applications, demonstrating a fairer recruitment process.

  • An online induction resource has been developed for new appointees, managers, and buddies. This resource outlines crucial information to facilitate the induction process and includes links to supporting materials, such as LinkedIn Learning and training requirements.

  • A Step by Step Guide and Templates for Equality Impact Assessment (EIA) have been developed, emphasising that EDI is a shared responsibility. EIAs serve as tools to ensure that policies, practices, strategies, or projects fulfil their intended purposes and are inclusive for staff, students, or visitors. Conducting an EIA helps to prioritise equality, diversity, and inclusion in all aspects of our endeavours.

  • Leadership & Management qualifications/apprenticeships. We have engaged a provider for these qualifications, running them as apprenticeships. Our provider specialises in EDI, ensuring that EDI principles are interwoven throughout the programmes.

  • Your Professional Learning Toolkit and Guide. A toolkit and accompanying workshop have been designed to empower staff with the knowledge, skills, and resources necessary for significant improvements in professional development. This initiative supports staff in identifying development priorities, understanding effective ways to develop, designing an effective Professional Development Plan (PDP), utilising a learning log for continuous improvement, and evaluating progress.

  • An Addendum to the Academic Progressions Handbook was produced to address the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic on academic promotions.

  • Since 2020, the University has supported a “hybrid” working model, combining at home and on-campus work for many teams. This approach allows for exploring optimal on-campus work levels based on role requirements, available space, and individual staff preferences where possible. Additional resources include a Manager’s Toolkit, and a Skills Development Guide – Building Hybrid Success.

  • The University prioritises the health and wellbeing of its community. An Employee Wellbeing Partner was introduced in 2021 to further integrate wellbeing into our culture. Initiatives include relaunching the Employee Assistance Programme, offering 24/7 support, and providing additional staff resources such as a practical wellbeing LinkedIn Learning pathway and a Supporting Wellbeing toolkit.

  • In December 2021, the People and Culture Division launched the first all-staff Pulse Survey, incorporating questions about wellbeing. These surveys, conducted periodically throughout the year, allow us to gauge staff wellbeing and engagement with planned initiatives, providing evidence for ongoing action.