CSIRO thrives on innovation; innovation that is harnessed by the diversity of the minds and lived experiences brought to our greatest challenges. Fostering an inclusive culture is critical to shaping the future for our customers, all Australians and the world.
Our priority is to improve how we recruit diverse, talented people and empower them to flourish. CSIRO is currently a member of Pride in Diversity, the Australian Network on Disability, the Champions of Change Coalition (CCC) initiative, and Science in Australia Gender Equity (SAGE) pilot program. These programs, along with our internal networks and community groups, support us to foster change within our organisation.
Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander contributions
We recognise that Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples have made and will continue to make extraordinary contributions to all aspects of Australian life including culture, economy and science. Our Reconciliation Action Plan (RAP) aims to achieve greater participation of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people in our research and development agenda and activities. This participation will ensure that we benefit from the insights that Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples can bring to the national challenges.
We are committed to encouraging more Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people to work with us, in all areas of science, research and support services. We have opportunities across a wide range of roles in human resources, administration, finance, communication, information technology, science and engineering.
Targeting gender equity
To be a truly diverse organisation we need to reflect the diversity that we see in society. However, women still hold far fewer leadership positions than men particularly in STEM fields where only 18 per cent of leadership positions are held by women. We're addressing gender equity through our work with the Science in Australia Gender Equity (SAGE) pilot and the Champions of Change Coalition (CCC) initiative as well as a Champion of the Women in STEM Decadal Science Plan.
Science in Australia Gender Equity (SAGE)
We have been a member of the Science in Australia Gender Equity (SAGE) pilot of the Athena SWAN program since 2015. Athena SWAN has been successfully advancing workplace gender equity and inclusiveness in science and technology organisations in the United Kingdom for over a decade.
As part of our application for the SAGE Bronze Accreditation we reviewed the representation and lived experience of our people across a range of demographics including age, gender, culture, language, disability, LGBTQI+ and Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander. Where there were demographics that were underrepresented, we worked to find out why and whether there were barriers that could be removed to create a truly inclusive environment. We began implementing our 90-point SAGE Action Plan in mid-2018. In November 2018, we were awarded Athena SWAN Bronze accreditation among 14 other research institutions.
Our Action Plan for delivering a gender-inclusive workplace covers eliminating systemic and cultural barriers including identifying pay gaps, flexible leave arrangements for all our people and tackling everyday sexism.
Find out more about our flexible working arrangements program called 'Balance'.
Champions of Change Coalition (CCC)
The Champions of Change Coalition (CCC) works with influential leaders to redefine men's role in tackling gender inequality. It activates peer groups of influential male leaders and supports them to step up beside women to accelerate change. They have committed to work together to listen, learn and lead through action. Rather than focusing on what women can do, they strive to shift the system by understanding and addressing systemic biases and barriers that limit women’s advancement. MCC recognises that gender equality benefits everyone and we all have a role to play.
Larry Marshall, our Chief Executive, is a member of the CCC STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths) group which is looking at ways to increase the number of women in STEM.
For the last two years, CSIRO achieved Gold Employer Status through the Australian Workplace Equality Index (AWEI) on the assessment of our LGBTIQ+ inclusion activities for the 2019 and 2020 calendar years. The AWEI sets a comparative benchmark on LGBTIQ+ workplace inclusion for employers across all sectors. It compares organisations across a broad range of equality metrics, including policy, culture and training.
This is the highest AWEI achievement obtained by CSIRO over four consecutive years and demonstrates the significant leap in LGBTIQ+ inclusion we have taken since 2017.
Our Pride@CSIRO Network
Pride@CSIRO is a professional network and social community for LGBTQI+ identifying employees and allies. The network promotes and drives the inclusion of LGBTQI+ employees by; raising awareness, supporting peers and challenging discrimination. Pride@CSIRO actively contributes to building a safe and welcoming workplace culture that celebrates the multiple aspects of diversity which form identities and experiences, so we can all bring our whole selves to work.