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Associate Professor Liz New in the lab

Women in science

Supporting and encouraging women in science
The Faculty of Science is continually inspired by the strong impact women have on academia. To show our commitment and investment in women, we are involved in a number of initiatives that strive to achieve gender equity.
Young woman at work in a chemistry lab

Women in leadership positions in academia are underrepresented despite over half of all science graduates being women. This is the case within the sciences as well in technology, engineering, mathematics and medicine (STEMM).

The Faculty of Science, our Schools and the University at large are seeking to address this disparity by undertaking a number of initiatives at the institutional and local level, that encourage women to apply for promotions and pursue career progression and to support family-friendly working arrangements.

The Women in Science (WISCI) Project

The WISCI Project was started in the Faculty of Science in 2007. It began with the awareness of the fact that, while women are well represented among undergraduate and postgraduate students and even among postdoctoral fellows, they are underrepresented among staff in senior academic roles. Women just do not seem to apply for promotion in the same numbers as men.

WISCI project goals include:

  • Identify some of the obstacles that prevent women achieving senior roles in the sciences.

  • Encourage more women into senior academic roles within the Faculty of Science.

  • Support more women to achieve satisfying and productive careers in science.

Science in Australia Gender Equity (SAGE) pilot program

Officially launched in 2016, the University of Sydney's SAGE program builds on the WISCI project and keeps the University accountable in achieving our gender equity goals through our internal self assessment team. 

SAGE is a collaborative program delivered in partnership with the Australian Academy of Science and the Australian Academy of Technological Sciences and Engineering. It was first launched in London in 2005.


The University is also undertaking a proactive approach to analysing and improving our culture. The Faculty is commited to this initiative and seeks to highlight the achievements of our women students, staff and researchers to all our audiences. 

Learn more about our strategies to improve gender equity and diversity.