Gender equality is one of the key challenges facing society today. Across the world, it manifests in many forms, including pay, employment opportunities and access to education.
The United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) look to tackle some of today’s biggest global issues, and SDG 5 addresses the issue of gender equality.
As part of the Impact Rankings, Times Higher Education has produced a ranking focusing on how universities are contributing to gender equality. Some of the measures looked at are research on gender, policies on gender equality, commitment to recruiting and promoting women, the proportion of first-generation female students and student access measures. You can read more about the methodology here.
Top five universities for gender equality
Western Sydney University was named an Employer of Choice for Gender Equality by the federal government’s Workplace Gender Equality Agency. The institution has held this title for the past 21 years.
Western is also dedicated to combating sexual violence on campus through the development of a respectful relationships education programme to be implemented across the Australian university sector.
A Gender Equity Strategy and Action Plan has been implemented to focus on the areas where gender equality can be improved. One of the key aims of the plan is to support the university’s efforts in recruiting, retaining and helping female staff advance. Other measures that have been introduced in response to the plan are improved breastfeeding facilities on campus, additional leave for staff experiencing domestic violence, and the development of a Gender Equality Policy.
The University of Bologna has a gender equality plan with a range of aims, including promoting a work-life balance, pursuing a gender balance in senior positions, gender equality in recruitment and career development, promoting gender and intersectionality in research and combating gender-based violence.
There are a number of courses that look at gender equality at the university, as well as a range of initiatives, including the seminar on male violence against women.
The University of Malaya’s gender studies programme was established in the mid-1990s and was the first in Malaysia to offer undergraduate students the chance to study gender studies.
The programme covers many gender-based issues in society including gender stereotypes, gender-based violence and discrimination at work.
The university also offers a master’s programme in gender studies that provides students with the opportunity to continue conversations and campaign towards gender equality in Malaysia.
Manipal Academy of Higher Education promotes gender equality by providing women with equal access to education and providing a safe campus for them to study.
The university hosts research seminars on topics such as female mental health, women and law, and public health policies for women in India. Research projects at the university include looking at safe digital spaces for women, family planning and fertility rates.
Government College Women University Faisalabad has introduced a range of measures to support female staff and students. For female students the university has provided on-campus accommodation, transport and sports facilities.
For female staff the university has promised equal pay and equal opportunity.
The university also organises a range of events and activities to raise awareness of gender equality.
Lahore College for Women University (LCWU) is the second Pakistani university to feature in the top five for SDG 5.
The university has mentoring schemes for women in the careers centre and the entrepreneurship centre.
The university also has a range of progress initiatives such as parental leave and harassment complaint cells to combat gender inequality.
Top universities for gender equality 2023: Top 100
Editor’s note: As part of our THE statement on Ukraine published on 2 March 2022, Russian universities have been given less prominence in our rankings. Russian universities that met the criteria for this ranking are not displayed in the table above.