Equal Rights Policy

University of Iceland Equal Rights Policy 2013-2017

Approved at a meeting of the University Council 16 January 2014.

Table of Contents

I. Introduction

1. In general

2. Background

3. The University of Iceland’s guiding principle in matters of equal rights

4. Primary objectives of the University of Iceland Equal Rights Policy

5. Responsibility and implementation

6. Review

II. Primary objectives of the University of Iceland Equal Rights Policy

1. Ensuring the integration of the equality dimension in all operations at the University of Iceland

2. Fostering diversity amongst employees at the University of Iceland

3. Taking the equality dimension into full consideration in organising studies, in teaching and in research

4. Taking the equality dimension into full consideration in the implementation of administrative projects

 

I. Introduction
2. In general

The University of Iceland is an international research university which also has considerable duties towards Icelandic society and culture. One of the core principles at the University, in accordance with its policy for 2011-2016, is an emphasis on equality and diversity, and the University has resolved to always take a leading role with respect to equal rights issues.

The University of Iceland places importance on democratic working practices, equality, and preventing discrimination in all areas of operations. The University considers the diversity amongst its students and staff to be a strength of the institution and places emphasis on improving human resources and the job satisfaction of students and staff. The University of Iceland has considerable social responsibility, and encourages its staff to participate in the progress of Icelandic society, for example through the power of their research, expert knowledge in equal rights issues and those opportunities inherent in cooperation and concerted effort.

2. Background

The policy of the University of Iceland in equal rights matters has so far rested on three main pillars:

  • University of Iceland Equal Rights Programme 2009-2013,
  • University of Iceland Policy Concerning the Affairs of Disabled People from 2002, and
  • University of Iceland Policy Against Discrimination from 2005.

The first University of Iceland equal rights policy was approved by the University Council in 2000. The policy recognised the necessity of adopting special temporary measures in order to achieve genuine equal rights and equal status for women and men. The University of Iceland Equal Rights Policy 2005-2009 reiterated the goal of integrating gender equality and equal rights into all operations at the University of Iceland, such as administration, teaching and research, and emphasised that gender equality would be a guiding principle in policy-making, decision taking and planning. Emphasis was placed on work on equality matters as a component of the quality reforms taking place within the University. The Equal Rights Committee was tasked with managing equal rights matters, in a broad sense, and the plan was particularly focused on equality between women and men. The University of Iceland Equal Rights Programme 2009-2013 emphasises, for example, equal opportunities between women and men, the coordination of work and family life for staff and students, mutual respect between men and women and wellbeing in the workplace.

The first University policy concerning the affairs of disabled people was approved by the University Council in 1991. The goal was to assess the needs of students and to offer assistance and services. In 2002, the current University of Iceland Policy Concerning the Affairs of Disabled People was defined, with the goal of ensuring that disabled staff and students have access to appropriate support, and that they are able to actively participate in University operations.

The University of Iceland Policy Against Discrimination from 2005 emphasises that each employee and student is responsible for working to prevent discrimination and ensuring that they do not, through their words or actions, create a hostile environment for any specific individual or group.

3. The University of Iceland’s guiding principle in matters of equal rights

The guiding principle of the University of Iceland Equal Rights Policy 2013-2017 is to ensure that all students and employees at the University of Iceland have equal rights and equal status, and to promote their active participation within the University community.

The Policy aims to ensure that all individuals are afforded their rights within the University without facing discrimination that marginalises or offends any individual or group on the basis of sex, gender, gender identity, sexual orientation, age, disability, health, nationality, race, skin colour, origins, religion, views, culture or position in any other sense.

The Policy replaces previous equal rights policies, the 2002 Policy Concerning the Affairs of Disabled People and the 2005 Policy Against Discrimination. On the basis of this new Policy, systematic work will be carried out towards equality in a broad sense of the term, or equality of diversity, and the focus will be placed on those many innate, social and cultural factors which form the basis of discrimination. The factor considered to be the root of discrimination faced by any one person generally depends on the individual. Emphasis is here placed on the interplay of different factors, since discrimination is generally based on the influence and overlap of many factors which simultaneously make up people’s lives and experiences.

When working towards equality in a broad sense, the fact that Icelandic society assumes that all individuals are either male or female must not be ignored. Unavoidably, to a certain extent discrimination is always based on stereotypical ideas about women and men, at the same time as other factors may be involved, such as disability, origins, religion or sexual orientation. Measures intended to level the status of women and men therefore have more general implications and improve the status of all individuals. Icelandic laws also define a policy of closing the gender gap with regard to the proportional participation of women and men in society. In accordance with the nature of the matter, this does not apply in a comparable way to other groups. Furthermore, an essentially different perspective lies behind the recording of a person’s sex and the recording of other factors. In accordance with the law, statistical data must be disaggregated according to sex. On the other hand, there is a general requirement to respect the right of every individual to comment or refuse to comment on other factors, such as disability, origins, health, gender identity, sexual orientation, religion, political views or culture.

The guiding principle of the Equal Rights Policy comprises the general strategy of the University of Iceland in matters of equality. A framework is then formed on the basis of this strategy for specific measures which the University of Iceland considers necessary and realistic for implementation over the next four years, in response to many different kinds of discrimination. In order to guarantee systematic measures in matters of equality, it is necessary to consider to some extent the situation and needs of different groups within the University of Iceland. Specific plans of action may be formulated on the basis of the Policy, for example to improve the position of disabled people, individuals of foreign origin or queer people.

The Policy is based on the Policy of the University of Iceland 2011-2016. The Policy is also based on the equality principle of Article 65 of the Constitution of Iceland no. 33/1944, cf. Act no. 97/1995 and various international agreements. The provisions of Icelandic laws were taken into account, first and foremost the Act on Equal Status and Equal Rights of Women and Men no. 10/2008 and the Act on the Affairs of Disabled People no. 59/1992, with subsequent amendments. Consideration was taken of measures which have been developed for gender mainstreaming and theories on the balanced scorecard strategy performance management tool. The status and level of knowledge of equality matters at the University of Iceland were evaluated and, as far as possible, sex-disaggregated data and data on the status of other groups was gathered. The results of this evaluation may be found in the report The Status and Development of Equal Opportunities at the University of Iceland 2008-2011. Discussions were held within the University in order for people to share ideas about gender equality and equality between other groups, expectations, and responses to the current situation. Necessary projects were outlined and emphasis was placed on cooperation, clear goals, education, expertise, follow-up and evaluation of success.

The Policy applies to all staff at the University, students, researchers and others connected to University of Iceland operations.

4. Primary objectives of the University of Iceland Equal Rights Policy

The primary objectives of the Policy are:

  • Ensuring the integration of the equality dimension in all operations at the University of Iceland
  • Fostering diversity amongst employees at the University of Iceland
  • Taking the equality dimension into full consideration in organising studies, in teaching and in research
  • Taking the equality dimension into full consideration in the implementation of administrative projects

Section II of the Policy will discuss these primary objectives in more detail, presenting selected working objectives, measures and the way in which the success of individual measures will be assessed. It is worth emphasising that all measures are dependent on the securing of necessary funds.

5. Responsibility and implementation

The highest authorities of the University of Iceland are ultimately responsible for equal rights, that is the University Council and the rector.

The University Council Equal Rights Committee shall oversee matters of equality at the University of Iceland on behalf of the rector and the University Council. The committee shall create and submit proposals on the University of Iceland Equal Rights Policy, oversee its progression in collaboration with other responsible parties, and review it regularly. On the basis of the Policy, the Equal Rights Committee may create plans of action to deal with specific issues, in collaboration with other responsible parties, and suggest the creation of rules of procedure for individual matters as appropriate.

The Council for the Affairs of Disabled People shall oversee the affairs of students at the University of Iceland with disabilities or learning difficulties, under the authority of the rector and the University Council.

The equal opportunities officer shall, under the auspices of University of Iceland administration, ultimately supervise matters of equality in collaboration with the Equality Committee and the Council for the Affairs of Disabled People. The role of the equal opportunities officer is, amongst other things, to advocate the University’s Equal Rights Policy and to promote the thinking that matters of equality are a natural part of the operations of the University. Individuals believing they do not enjoy equal rights or that they face discrimination, in consideration of this Policy, can seek the counsel of the equal opportunities officer, who shall endeavour to direct each case through the appropriate channels.

Equal rights committees for schools, central administration and institutes at the University of Iceland shall create and submit proposals on the equal rights policies of schools and institutes, and are responsible for monitoring these in collaboration with contacts within the administration.

School deans, directors of institutes and organisational units and heads of the central administration divisions at the University of Iceland are responsible for ensuring that individual provisions of the Equal Rights Policy are enforced within the relevant administrative unit.

All those individuals to which the Policy applies are responsible for preventing unlawful discrimination and for creating a University community characterised by respect, understanding and tolerance.

6. Review

The University Council Equal Rights Committee shall take the initiative in instigating reviews of the status and development of equal opportunities within the University of Iceland every four years, cf. Report on the Status and Development of Equal Opportunities at the University of Iceland 2008-2011. In preparing and compiling the report, the Equal Rights Committee shall collaborate with other responsible parties as appropriate.

The report shall form the basis for a review of this Policy, which shall be completed before the end of 2017.

II. Primary objectives of the University of Iceland Equal Rights Policy
1. Ensuring the integration of the equality dimension in all operations at the University of Iceland

Integration of the equality dimension into all policy-making, planning and decision taking is one of the key ways in which to ensure equality in Icelandic society.

The equality principle of the Icelandic Constitution states that the government is required to take the initiative in adopting active measures in order to ensure equality in a broad sense. The requirement for integration of the equality dimension is clearly supported by the provisions of the Act on Equal Status and Equal Rights of Women and Men no. 10/2008. In recent years various gender mainstreaming methods have been developed. The goal here is to work with these methods for the purpose of ensuring the integration of the equality dimension in a broad sense.

Integration of the equality dimension within the University of Iceland is a systematic way to enhance the quality of work conducted within the University and, at the same time, an important contribution to the progress of Icelandic society. Steady, continuous work is required in raising general awareness of integration within the University of Iceland, developing a shared vision and encouraging collaboration and consultation between those who are responsible for and work in matters of equality, in a broad sense.

The integration of the equality dimension in this Policy is based on the idea that everyone within the University of Iceland accepts responsibility for considering the positions of different groups at risk for systematic discrimination, every time a policy is formed or a decision taken. This integration requires everyone to have sufficient basic knowledge to recognise the positions of different groups within the University community, analyse this position and seek explanations, devise systematic measures, take decisions and evaluate the success of any action taken.

Working objective

Measure

Responsibility

Time frame

Promote visibility, awareness and understanding of equality within and outside of UI.

Organise and hold Equality Days at UI, based on interdisciplinary collaboration and input from experts in the field of equal rights.

The equal opportunities officer, in collaboration with interested parties.

Held annually.

Promote dynamic and coordinated work on equality matters within UI.

Meeting held annually between the UI Equal Rights Committee, the UI head of quality administration, and representatives of the foremost institutes in the field of equal rights within UI, in order to share experiences and ideas.

The University Council Equal Rights Committee, the equal opportunities officer and the UI head of quality administration.

Held annually.

Integration of the equality dimension in all policy formation, planning and decision making amongst staff at UI.

Prepare educational material on the following topics:

· general guidelines on integration in the work of UI
· guidelines / checklist for integration in hiring and promotion
· guidelines / practical examples for integration in budgeting
· guidelines / practical examples for integration in teaching and research

The University Council Equal Rights Committee and the equal opportunities officer, in collaboration with specialists who will be asked to complete individual tasks.

Creation of educational material completed before 1 April 2014.

Present the educational material at a meeting of central administration personnel at UI, and following this continue to disseminate the material to other staff as appropriate.

The University Council Equal Rights Committee, central administration and management personnel.

The presentation will take place in September 2014.

Regularly present and encourage active discussion of the educational material at school board meetings.

School equal rights committees and school deans.

Presentation will take place for the first time in September 2014. Following this, annually.

Regularly present and encourage active discussion of the educational material at faculty meetings.

Individual faculty heads.

Presentation will take place for the first time in September 2014. Following this, annually.

Encourage the Student Council Equal Rights Committee to regularly present the educational material to school council representatives and the board of the Student Council.

The equal opportunities officer, in collaboration with the University Council Equal Rights Committee.

Presentation will take place for the first time in September 2014. Following this, annually.

Encourage students in courses in applied gender studies to complete projects analysing the way in which funding is divided between and within schools and faculties.

The equal opportunities officer and programme coordinator for gender studies.

Proposed date of completion 1 May 2014.

Encourage students in courses in applied gender studies to complete projects on the organisation of selected programme and courses.

The equal opportunities officer and programme coordinator for gender studies.

Proposed date of completion 1 May 2015.

2. Fostering diversity amongst employees at the University of Iceland

As is stated in the Policy of the University of Iceland 2011-2016, students and employees are greatly valued the University. The University strives to promote the welfare, wellbeing, safety and health of employees and students. The University in particular wishes to attract students and staff of diverse backgrounds, and take into full consideration the position and requirements of men and women, disabled people, people of foreign origin, queer people and other groups.

This section will first focus on general objectives which apply to all human resources at the University. Attention will then be turned specifically to students, and then to employees. In selecting measures to implement over the next four years, it is necessary to examine the positions of different groups. It is also important to aim to create an environment, conditions and working procedures which are effective for everyone, and furthermore adopt appropriate measures as needed in order to ensure equal opportunities for everyone. Here it is worth mentioning the main statistical data available.

In October 2013, a total of 13,792 students were registered at the University of Iceland, 9,037 women (66%) and 4,745 men (34%). The ratio of men to women differs depending on school and individual faculty, in some places significantly, as detailed in the Report on the Status and Development of Equal Opportunities at the University of Iceland 2008-2011. The number of students receiving disability services in their studies has increased significantly in recent years. In 2000 there were 148, in 2008 there were 461 and for the academic year 2012-2013 there were a total of 941. Most of these receive assistance because of learning difficulties affecting their studies. Almost 7% of all students at the University received disability services in their studies in 2012-2013, a total of just over 7% of female students and almost 6% of male students. The number of international students at the University of Iceland has steadily increased over the past decade. In 2003, for example, there were 584 international students at the University, as compared to 1,152 in 2013.

In 2012 there was a total of 1,368 employees at the University of Iceland, 717 women (52%) and 651 men (48%). Despite the fact that almost equal numbers of women and men work at the University, the Report on the Status and Development of Equal Opportunities at the University of Iceland 2008-2011, and other sex-disaggregated data on staff, confirms that there is a considerable gender gap within the uppermost tiers, first and foremost for academic positions but also in administration. The proportion of women amongst professors has steadily increased since the turn of the century. In 2012, for example, women made up around a quarter of all professors, compared to 7% in 1996. However, this proportion has changed little since 2006. The proportion of women amongst senior lecturers has increased from 20% in 1996 to around 42% in 2012. On the other hand, there are more women than men amongst lecturers, adjunct lecturers and sessional teachers. Administrative staff at the University of Iceland in 2012 were 63% women and 37% men. However, in 2013 men outnumbered women in the most senior positions in the University’s central administration, and it bears mentioning that currently three out of five school deans are men.

Working objective

Measure

Responsibility

Time frame

Ensure that the atmosphere at UI is free from prejudice and unlawful discrimination against students or employees.

Encourage employees and students to avoid assuming that everyone is in the same or a similar position, e.g. with regard to gender identity, sexual orientation, disability, nationality, religion, life stance or culture, neither in administration, teaching, studies, collaboration nor in informal relations.

The Division of Academic Affairs, the Division of Human Resources, school deans and everyone within UI.

A survey on the working environment and wellbeing of students and staff before 1 May 2014, and again before 1 May 2016.

Ensure that gender-related harassment, sexual violence and bullying are not tolerated within the University of Iceland.

Compose rules of procedure on the response to gender-related harassment and sexual violence, which will be submitted to the University Council for approval.

The University Council Equal Rights Committee, in collaboration with the Division of Human Resources.

Submit to the University Council in January 2014. Annual statement on the number of cases after the rules of procedure enter into force.

Review rules of procedure on the response to bullying, which will be submitted to the University Council for approval.

The University Council Equal Rights Committee, in collaboration with the Division of Human Resources and the Division of Academic Affairs.

Submit to the University Council in February 2015. Annual statement on the number of cases after the rules of procedure enter into force.

Ensure that regular education is available for students and employees with regards to gender-related harassment, sexual violence and bullying.

The equal opportunities officer, the Division of Human Resources and the Division of Academic Affairs.

A course every year.

Ensure that all work concerning the organisation of the University campus and services to students and staff takes into account ideology on universal design, i.e. the idea that everyone should be able to use the environment without the need for special arrangements.

Ensure that the University campus is safe and accessible for all students and employees, in particular disabled people, within those limits set by the older buildings.

The Division of Operations and Resources, in collaboration with the University Council Equal Rights Committee, the equal opportunities officer, the Council for the Affairs of Disabled People and the International Office.

Review of the situation regarding matters of accessibility before the end of 2015.

Ensure that everyone has equal access to education and counselling in connection with study and career choices.

The Student Counselling and Career Centre.

Annual statement on those seeking counselling.

Employ appropriate accommodation in order to ensure that all students and employees have equal opportunities with regards to studies and professional development, i.e. implement necessary and appropriate measures which go no further than that which might be considered reasonable.

Ensure that courses on the educational material DARE 2 on disability and higher education are available to all organisational units at UI.

The Student Counselling and Career Centre, in collaboration with the Council for the Affairs of Disabled People.

Courses held every year.

Ensure that essential information on studies and work at UI is available in languages other than Icelandic.

The Division of Operations and Resources and the Division of Marketing and Public Relations, in collaboration with the Student Counselling and Career Centre, the International Office and individual schools.

Review before the end of the 2015.

Analyse in more detail the status of women and men in accordance with the results of research conducted in 2012 on the working environment within UI.

The University Council Equal Rights Committee and the Division of Human Resources.

Summary and proposals available before 1 March 2014.

Create an environment which enables students and employees to coordinate studies or work with family life.

Gather the results of previously conducted research. Following this, evaluate the need for a special plan of action on family matters within UI to ensure that students and staff are able to coordinate their responsibilities in work or studies with their family responsibilities.

The University Council Equal Rights Committee and the equal opportunities officer, in collaboration with specialists who will be asked to complete individual tasks.

Summary and proposals available before 1 June 2015.

Promote a more equal ratio between the sexes amongst students at UI, and encourage a student population that reflects the diversity of society, in a broad sense.

Research the reasons for the number of women studying at the University growing faster than the number of men.

The University Council Equal Rights Committee, in collaboration with specialists, who will be asked to complete individual tasks, individual schools and, as applicable, the educational authorities.

Results of the research available before 1 June 2016.

Ensure that promotional material and presentations on UI appeal to different groups and reflect the diversity of society.

The Division of Marketing and Public Relations, individual school deans and individual faculty heads.

Review of promotional material when composing the next report on the status and development of equal opportunities at UI.

Evaluate to what extent the variety and organisation of study programmes and individual courses deter different groups from selecting programmes and studying at UI.

Individual school deans and individual faculty heads.

Review of selected programmes and courses, before 1 May 2016.

Ensure that regulations on the admission of new students, in particular concerning the arrangement of entrance examinations, take into account equality in a broad sense.

The rector and individual faculty heads.

Information published annually on the proportion of those who use disability services in entrance examinations, as well as sex-disaggregated data on the results of entrance examinations.

Increase the proportion of the sex significantly in the minority in individual faculties at UI.

Promote individual schools, faculties, programmes, course materials and modes of teaching such that they appeal to both sexes.

Individual school deans and individual faculty heads.

Review of selected faculties, before 1 May 2017.

Promote a more equal ratio between the sexes in various jobs at UI, and encourage a staff population that reflects the diversity of society, in a broad sense.

Research the low proportion of women amongst professors at UI.

The University Council Equal Rights Committee, in collaboration with a specialist and individual schools.

Complete research before 1 December 2016.

Review the hiring process from the composition of job advertisements to the final hiring decision, evaluate, e.g., whether:

· the criteria in advertisements are consciously or unconsciously directed towards one group rather than another in an unfair way
· the criteria of evaluation or selection committees are consciously or unconsciously directed towards one group rather than another in an unfair way
· measures are taken to prevent unlawful discrimination in the final hiring decision.

The University Council Equal Rights Committee and Division of Human Resources, in collaboration with a specialist who will be asked to contribute to the project.

Complete review of the hiring process before 1 April 2015.

Ensure that members of evaluation committees, selection committees and the Promotion Committee include both men and women, and that representation of either sex is not lower than 40%.

The rector and school deans, in collaboration with the equal opportunities officer.

Notification to the University Council Equal Rights Committee of appointment. Annual summary from the equal opportunities officer.

Draw attention in job advertisements to the goal of closing the gender gap.

Division of Human Resources.

Review of the hiring process.

Select applicants of the sex which is in the minority in the area or school in question, in those instances when more than one applicant is evaluated as equally competent.

Rector, school deans and directors of institutes.

Review of the hiring process.

Conduct a review on the development of regulations on promotion, and the effect this has on women and men within different UI faculties.

University Council Equal Rights Committee, in collaboration with the Division of Science and Innovation and other experts.

Complete before 1 March 2017.

Conduct a review on the development of the Evaluation System for Public Higher Education Institutions, and the effect this has on women and men within different UI faculties.

University Council Equal Rights Committee, in collaboration with the Division of Science and Innovation and other experts.

Complete  before 1 March 2017.

Ensure that all decisions on salaries, and decisions that affect salaries, are based on the principle that people shall not experience unlawful discrimination.

Regularly review the evaluation system for administration.

Division of Human Resources, in collaboration with the equal opportunities officer.

Review every three years, next before 1 September 2015.

Gather sex-disaggregated data on the total annual salaries of staff in academic positions, including payments from the Productivity Evaluation Fund or the Writing and Research Fund.

Division of Human Resources and Division of Science and Innovation.

Publish data before 1 February each year, for the first time before 1 February 2014.

Ensure that all staff have comparable opportunity to seek continuing education or vocational training.

Further analyse the results of research conducted in 2012 on the working environment within UI, which addressed, among other things, continuing education.

University Council Equal Rights Committee and the Division of Human Resources, in collaboration with the school deans.

Summary and proposals available before 1 March 2014.

3. Taking equal rights into full consideration in organising studies, in teaching and research

The Policy of the University of Iceland 2011-2016 emphasises that all studies at the University of Iceland should promote academic knowledge, technical skills and competence in scientific methodology, as well as strengthening critical thinking and a solid ethical awareness which will serve students well in employment as responsible citizens. A prerequisite of this is that students receive education in matters of equality and that all modes of study are designed to meet the needs of different students and ensure they have equal opportunity to thrive in their studies.

The Policy of UI also emphasises the success, influence and quality of research and the technical transfer of research results. The positions of different groups and individuals in society vary in social, economic and political senses. In order to promote improved quality and a fairer, more equal distribution of quality and risk in research, it is important for researchers to be aware of these positions when selecting research subjects and methodology, as well as when interpreting, presenting and applying research results. It is worth emphasising that this requirement for research quality does not assume that everyone should conduct research into matters of equality, rather that everyone should take matters of equality into account in their research. This therefore in no way detracts from the academic freedom of researchers within the University of Iceland.

The requirement for equality in the organisation of studies, teaching and research has its basis in law. Article 28 of the Act on Equal Status and Equal Rights of Women and Men no. 10/2008 specifically states that any kind of discrimination on the grounds of gender is prohibited in schools and other pedagogical institutions, and that care must be taken to avoid it in studies and teaching. Article 23 of the same Act states that students shall receive education in matters of equality at all stages of the education system. The Act also states that research into the status of the sexes in Icelandic society should be enhanced, basic academic research as well as practical research, and that the results of such research should be communicated systematically within the education system and to the media. Additionally, paragraph 3 states that teaching and study materials shall be so designed as to avoid discrimination on basis of sex. It is also worth mentioning the Act on the Affairs of Disabled People no. 59/1992, which, for example, emphasises that disabled people have the right to all general services from the state in order to achieve the Act’s objective of ensuring that disabled people are equal to and enjoy a comparable standard of living to other members of society and are provided with conditions for leading normal lives.

Working objective

Measure

Responsibility

Time frame

Organisation of programmes and individual courses must take equality into account, and therefore prevent unlawful discrimination.

Hold regular courses for teaching staff on integration of the equality dimension in teaching.

University Council Equal Rights Committee, in collaboration with the Centre for Teaching and Learning and an expert who will be engaged for the purpose.

Annually, for the first time in September 2015.

Produce learning outcomes for every study programme which assume proportionally equal participation of women and men, and the participation of other diverse groups.

Faculty heads.

Updated learning outcomes by 1 May 2014 at the latest.

Produce learning outcomes for every course which assume proportionally equal participation of women and men, and the participation of other diverse groups.

All supervisory teachers at UI.

Updated for the first time before 1 September 2014. Following this, in good time before the beginning of each semester.

Help to ensure that, in compiling the course catalogue, courses are made equally accessible to all, for example with regard to decisions on course material, teaching methods and assessment.

All teaching staff at UI.

Implemented in good time before the beginning of each course.

Seek to reflect equal proportions of both sexes in society and to take into consideration the diversity of society, in a broad sense, in all aspects of teaching, e.g. in lectures, choice of visual materials, examples and realistic projects.

All teaching staff at UI.

Always in teaching.

Research work within the University of Iceland shall take into account equality, in a broad sense.

In research, seek to consider the needs and perspectives of different groups within society and to highlight distinct effects on different groups, as applicable, for example in the choice of research subject and methodology, and in interpretation, presentation and application of results.

All researchers within UI.

Review conducted by the University Council Equal Rights Committee, in collaboration with the Division of Science and Innovation, before 1 September 2017.

Produce a summary of the division of applications to and grants awarded from research and scholarship funds within UI according to sex.

University Council Equal Rights Committee, in collaboration with the Division of Science and Innovation and other experts.

Annually, for the first time before 1 April 2014.

4. Taking equal rights into full consideration in the implementation of administrative projects

The Policy of the University of Iceland 2011-2016 emphasises the need to strengthen the infrastructure of all elements of University operations. The Policy states that strong leadership and team unity are, for example, key to quality culture and the success of the University and that the University resolves to continue to enhance the administrative system, strengthen support services and improve working procedures in order to facilitate achievement of UI’s objectives.

The systematic recording of information is the cornerstone for organising work on equality matters and measuring success. In accordance with the Policy of UI, all management personnel are required to ensure the secure recording and storage of information and systematic communication of such information to staff and students. Information must be gathered where it is essential for staff and students, in order that they can perform well in their jobs or studies.

As previously mentioned, sex is unique when it comes to the recording of information. In accordance with the Act on Equal Status and Equal Rights of Women and Men no. 10/2008, the analysis of statistical data by sex is one of the legal requirements for fulfilling the objectives of the Act. On the other hand, there is a general requirement to respect the right of every individual to comment or not comment on other factors, such as disability, origins, health, gender identity, sexual orientation, religion, political views or culture. Generally speaking, therefore, it is not possible to require the University of Iceland to regularly record and analyse information on different groups in the same way as is done with sex. Nevertheless, it is important to seek ways of satisfactorily highlighting the numbers and positions of individuals belonging to different groups.

The University of Iceland website provides sex-disaggregated data on the number of students in undergraduate and postgraduate studies within individual schools and faculties, as well as information on international students, though this is only sex-disaggregated for the academic year 2011-2012. It also provides itemised data on the position of disabled students and others who receive disability services in their studies. It also provides sex-disaggregated data on the number of staff at the University of Iceland, itemised by full-time equivalent positions and foremost professional titles.

The University of Iceland budget and the division of funding within the University reflect values and priorities. Measures have been developed which are used in gender-responsive budgeting, e.g. under the auspices of the Ministry of Finance. These are important measures which promote better economic management and a fairer distribution of public funding, with the prosperity and welfare of society in mind. Application of these measures during the period covered by this Policy could lay the foundation for evaluating the impact of economic management on different groups in the future.

It is important to ensure dynamic work on equality matters within organisational units at the University of Iceland, in every school, in central administration and in larger institutes. In this way, work on equality matters may be enhanced and tailored to suit the needs, strengths and emphases of individual organisational units. Equal rights committees should be appointed and equal rights policies be formulated, in consideration of the University of Iceland Equal Rights Policy and based on data gathered about the positions and needs of different groups within the organisational unit in question.

It is also important that everyone have equivalent opportunity to participate in administration and policy-making at the University of Iceland. In this, it is vital to close the gender gap but also to provide individuals from different groups with the opportunity to become involved with these elements of operations.

Working objective

Measure

Responsibility

Time frame

Systematically record the information necessary to enact the UI Equal Rights Policy.

Regularly record and publish sex-disaggregated data on the registration and graduation of students, according to school and faculty, for undergraduate and postgraduate programmes.

Division of Academic Affairs, in collaboration with the Student Registration.

Annually or more frequently.

Regularly record and publish sex-disaggregated data on international students.

Division of Academic Affairs, in collaboration with the Student Registration.

Annually.

Regularly record and publish sex-disaggregated and itemised data on those receiving disability services.

Division of Academic Affairs, in collaboration with the Student Counselling and Career Centre.

Annually.

Regularly record and publish sex-disaggregated data on staff in academic and administrative positions.

Division of Human Resources.

Annually.

Record sex-disaggregated data on number of research points in accordance with the Evaluation System for Public Higher Education Institutions, specifically stating the number of advanced points.

Division of Science and Innovation.

Publish data before 1 December each year, for the first time before 1 December 2014.

Regularly record and publish sex-disaggregated data on applications to and grants awarded from funds within UI.

Division of Science and Innovation.

Publish data before 1 March each year, for the first time before 1 March 2014.

Adopt gender-responsive budgeting.

Arrange presentations and courses under the auspices of the Ministry of Finance on gender-responsive budgeting for management personnel in central administration, school deans, school managing directors and others as applicable.

The head and staff of the Division of Finance.

Held before 1 March 2014.

Appoint a task force to prepare gender-responsive budgeting within UI by creating a plan of action for individual projects.

The head and staff of the Division of Finance.

Appoint a task force before 1 April 2014. Plan of action for projects available before 1 October 2014.

Appoint a task force within each school to prepare gender-responsive budgeting within UI schools by creating a plan of action for individual tasks.

School deans, in collaboration with school managing directors.

Appoint a task force before 1 May 2014. Plan of action for projects available before 1 November 2014.

Enhance work on equality matters within organisational units of the University of Iceland.

Appoint an equal rights committee for the central administration, equal rights committees in all schools and in institutes with 25 or more employees.

Rector, school deans and boards of selected UI institutes.

Appointment of equal rights committees, no later than two months following the entry into force of this Policy.

Prepare and establish equal rights policies for the central administration, each school and for institutes with 25 or more employees.

Equal rights committees for central administration, schools and institutes, in collaboration with the rector, school deans, school assemblies and boards of institutes.

Equal rights policies available before 1 January 2015, at the latest.

Submit reports on the implementation of individual equal rights policies.

Equal rights committees for central administration, schools and institutes.

Report submitted to the University Council Equal Rights Committee every two years.

Enhance collaboration between equal rights committees within UI.

University Council Equal Rights Committee.

Annual consultative meetings.

Enhance collaboration with the UI Student Council and student interest groups.

Equal opportunities officer.

Annual consultative meetings.

Promote equal participation in administration and policy-making within UI.

Nominate both a man and a woman, and take into consideration as far as possible the diversity of society, in a broad sense, when nominating people to committees, boards, councils, task forces or any kind of working group containing more than three members.

All parties responsible for nominations.

Parties responsible for nominations shall send the University Council Equal Rights Committee an annual overview of nominations.

It must be ensured that appointments to committees, boards, councils, task forces or any kind of working group under the auspices of the University of Iceland or its institutes are as equal as possible in terms of sex. Representation of either sex shall never be lower than 40% in cases where there are more than three members. Also ensure that the diversity of society, in a broad sense, is taken into consideration as far as possible.

All parties responsible for appointments.

Parties responsible for appointments shall send the University Council Equal Rights Committee an annual overview of appointments.

 


Previous Equal Rights Programmes

University of Iceland Equal Rights Programme 2009-2013
University of Iceland Equal Rights Programme 2005-2009
 

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