Today, on International Women's Day, the University of Bristol released its inaugural Gender Pay Gap Report 2018 revealing it has a mean gender pay gap of 21.1%.
The report also reveals that the University of Bristol has a median gender pay gap of 16.2%, compared to a national figure of 18.4%. This year is the first year employers with over 250 employees are required to release such information under the Equality Act 2010.
The median pay gap 'is the difference between mid point male salary and mid point female salary'. The mean gender pay gap was found to be 21.1%, but there are no available national figure for comparison. The median and mean pay gap figures are often different as mean results are affected by extreme values which would drive up or down the overall average.
At the University of Bristol, women make up 55% of staff but the report found that they comprise of just '41 per cent of the upper quartile of staff when we look at male and female staff by salaries'.
The report also discloses that the proportion of female professors has increased by 6.1 percentage points from 2013 to 2017, 'the current level being in line with the Russell Group universities’ average' according to the University.
The gender pay gap is defined as 'a measure of the difference between the average hourly earnings of men and women', not to be confused with unequal pay which is 'the unlawful practice of paying men and women differently for performing the same or similar work or work of equal value'.
The report concludes that a range of factors are responsible for these findings, including a greater number of men in higher paid roles and the nature of an academic career that the University say 'can make it difficult for early career academics to progress quickly to more senior roles'.
In order to address these inequalities, the University say they have introduced a number of 'family friendly initiatives' and have 'rolled out unconscious bias training across the organisation'. The university also 'aim to increase the number of female professors from 23.5% to 33% by 2022-2023'.
In response to this news, Bristol UCU commented: 'We at Bristol UCU submitted a formal claim on Tuesday this week, based on figures from the 2016 Equal Pay Audit, to ask the University to commit to closing the gender pay within three years. It's clear that across the institution, the higher up in seniority, the more male dominated the university is. We have asked the University to work with us on this as an issue of collective bargaining.'
The amazing @josiemclellan (behind pillar) speaking about @BristolUni gender pay gap of 20% (wtf!?) at @Bristol_UCU organised #IWD2018 and #USSstrike rally. Lots of inspiring colleagues here at rally. pic.twitter.com/4xSwlIkcbN— Mark Jackson (@m_s_jackson) March 8, 2018
Sue Clyne, Co- Chair of the University of Bristol's Gender Equality Group and Head of Organisational Development said: 'While it is good news that our gender pay gap is below the national average, we remain utterly committed to ensuring that women and men can advance their careers equally to bring about career fulfilment, enabling a fully inclusive culture and harnessing even greater research and teaching success to sustain our university into the future. I am encouraged by our increasing number of female professors and that we are reviewing issues around the pipeline of female academics.'
Vice- Chancellor Hugh Brady also commented: 'People are at the heart of our institution. Achievement of all our goals depends on the skills, professionalism and engagement of our staff. The University and its senior leadership team is committed to closing the gender pay gap and will continue to embed practices to attract, retain and develop our talented female staff.'
Featured image Epigram / Alex Boulton