IUA Statement 9th Oct: IUA welcomes the announcement of €300,000 annual funding for Gender Equality Enhancement and a call for 15 new SALI posts

The IUA welcomes the launch of the Gender Equality Enhancement Fund of €300,000 annually and the approval of the second cycle of 15 SAL Initiative posts. Our universities are fully committed to working with Minister Simon Harris and the HEA to further promote gender equality across the sector as part of a broad-based equality, diversity and inclusion (EDI) agenda.

Funding gender equality initiatives that respond to the recommendations of the HEA Expert Group and the Gender Equality Taskforce’s actions is vital. Emerging research indicates that the impact of COVID-19 will disproportionally affect female academics in higher education, with negative effects on women’s careers, on those with caring responsibilities, and on those whose research time is lost to additional work in preparing blended teaching.

Commenting on the launch Jennifer Cleary, Head of Equality, Diversity and Inclusion at IUA said: ” We are very conscious of the significant financial challenges that the State is facing in addressing the impact of COVID-19. However, the Gender Equality Enhancement Fund is one of the essential tools provided to assist institutions in recovering from the crisis, maintaining supports for gender equality/EDI initiatives during the pandemic. This vital funding enables us to maintain our commitment to Equality and especially to Gender Equality during the pandemic“.

The IUA VP’s for Equality, Diversity and Inclusion wish to acknowledge the key role that the HEA and its Centre for Excellence in Gender Equality plays in ensuring sustainable acceleration towards gender equality in higher education, through centralised support for HEIs.  In particular, the Athena SWAN Charter, the SAL Initiative and the Gender Equality Enhancement Fund which supports innovative, cross-sectoral organisational and cultural change initiatives.


For more information contact:

Lia O’Sullivan, Head of Communications IUA, 085 7141414 lia.osullivan@iua.ie