The trans lobby has destroyed a flagship program to support women in academia, according to feminist professors last night.
To help universities tackle gender equality problems such as the wage gap and obstacles to women’s career, Athena Swan was established in 2005.
This is used to promote the careers of women working in science, technology and engineering around the globe.
However, Advance HE, which runs the scheme, is recommending that data be collected exclusively on gender-identity, not sex – meaning that transgender women, who were born men, are included.
Advance HE (which runs the Athena Swan Charter – which assists universities with gender equality issues) is advising that data only be collected on gender-identity and not sex. Kathleen Stock (pictured), however, stated that it would “destroy” the charter’s founding principle.
According to its website, Advance HE suggests asking questions about gender and not sex. This is to ensure equality efforts are inclusive of diverse gender identities.
Transgender activists have called for the treatment of transgender women as in other areas, such as official statistics or public policy.
Academics from Feminists claimed that the Athena Scheme had become a failure in its efforts to promote women’s rights based on sex.
Yesterday’s blog was co-authored by Alice Sullivan (Professor of Sociology at University College London) and Dr John Armstrong (Senior Lecturer in Financial Mathematics, Probability and Statistics).
They claimed that Athena Swan’s adoption of gender as a spectrum by the founder seems to be incompatible with their founding purpose.
Alice Sullivan, a sociology professor at University College London (pictured), stated in a blog that Athena Swan’s embrace of ‘gender spectrum’ was ‘incompatible’ with the institution’s founding purpose.
“This brings up uncomfortable questions regarding the tendency to the [university]Sector to transfer its equalities thinking to outside bodies.
Kathleen Stock, a philosopher professor, quit University of Sussex following students’ opposition to her views on gender.
The Daily Telegraph reported that she stated, “It’s absurd.” That changes the subject. Your data [on systematic discrimination of women]It is not robust anymore
Dr Armstrong stated that it was a great idea to gather data on gender identity, and sex. However, they shouldn’t be combined.
Advance HE previously stated in a statement that obtaining accreditation for the UK Athena Swan Charter is voluntary.
It is not linked to funding. We are strongly committed to constructive and open debate within and between HE Institutions on these difficult topics.
British Educational Research Association published the blog post.