RUMO Gender and Equality Plan
This document intends to provide the Gender and Equality Plan (GEP) implementation for RUMO. According to the European Commission, a GEP is a formal document setting actions and commitments towards organisational/cultural transformation concerning gender equality (European Comission, 2009). To create awareness within RUMO in its institutional organisation, this GEP aims to promote a responsive culture in which everyday practices towards equality, diversity, inclusion, and justice are central to the core values of the platform.
This GEP proposes a strategy divided into areas and goals to be implemented; it is intended to be revised and updated regularly, on a yearly basis or in every moment that a subject is urgent to be revised, accommodating improvements. The document is designed following recognised suggested guidelines and research (Advance, 2021; Armstrong & Sullivan, 2023; Dieses, 2022; Jordão et al., 2020; Palmén & Schmidt, 2019; SETU, 2022; Wroblewski, 2019).
By establishing a GEP in RUMO organisational culture, RUMO’s Executive Management acknowledges equality as fundamental to the organisation's vision and purpose. With this plan, RUMO aims to continue to implement significant policies to create a work environment that values inclusion, promoting the visibility and integration of the workforce in its diversity of gender identities and cultural backgrounds, nationalities, ages, ethnicity, religion, sexual orientation and ability/neurotype.
The effort to implement these changes departures from the objective of creating fair, welcoming, and enabling work conditions for all its collaborators. Thus, the primary goal of this GEP is to propose guidelines to be implemented outlining strategies to enhance equality amongst the workforce, a framework addressing organisation practices concerning gender and other identity factors. Also, this GEP aims to promote ongoing dialogue between staff and executive management concerning improving the equality guidelines, measurement, and research at RUMO.
In terms of scope, this GEP applies to all RUMO workforce. In that sense, the implementation and effectiveness of this plan ensures the commitment of executive management and staff in adhering and supporting the actions defined to improve the knowledge and practices in regards gender equality.
Having that in consideration, the executive management at RUMO appointed an Equality Officer within the organisation to have the role of 1) overseeing the implementation of the GEP policies; 2) monitor and report the progress of the plan implementation, considering staff and management participation in this process and; 3) ensure the organisation of mechanisms designed to inform training and providing ongoing support to staff and management concerning the policies and procedures of the GEP.
Four continuous instances grant accountability and responsibility for this GEP. The first, ratification, considers that this GEP was generated and ratified by RUMO’s executive management and advised by RUMO’s equality officer. The second, communication, considers that executive management and the equality officer are responsible for disseminating information concerning gender equality, cascading further administrative and educative measures concerning good practices based on the GEP. The third, monitoring, defines that executive management and the equality officer are responsible for monitoring the plan's effectiveness, considering relevant feedback from collaborators to update and amend actions and development. The final stance considers data collection, as executive management and the equality officer are accountable for continuously collecting data disaggregated by a variable of gender and sex, but also other sociocultural and identity variables, to report, evaluate, and base decisions, actions, and commitments ensuring the effectiveness of this GPE implementation and enhancement.
This GEP identifies four focus areas in proposing an organisational cultural change in RUMO. The first area of focus relates to improving representation in management, progression, and recruitment. The second area is continuously integrating diversity and inclusion in developing RUMO Academia, research and staff development. The third area focuses on work-life balance in the organisation's culture. The final area concerns continuously creating awareness and policies to prevent and object to harassment and discrimination within the platform.
The first development area in this proposed GEP concerns improving representation in management, recruitment, progression, and events. The goal is to achieve more equal participation of more diverse people (gender, ethnicity, nationality, age, ability, and others) in decision-making, ensuring opportunities for career advancement.
To achieve this goal, this GEP proposes the following strategies: a) increase the representation of diversity within the staff and management; b) promote inclusive practices of recruitment, career development and professional evaluation; c) promote the participation of staff alongside management in decision making, including in opinions from people with diverse backgrounds.
To measure the effectiveness of this strategy, this GEP suggest that RUMO commits to 1) ensure representation of diverse individuals concerning gender, ethnicity, nationality, age, ability, and others in future projects and research activities; 2) ensure human resources practices, training and policies which promotes equal opportunities for all collaborators, including parental leave and family leave; 3) ensure recommendations to increase the balance of representation in all levels of the organisation; 4) engage with the public through social media and communicating the commitments concerning equality, diversity, inclusion and justice practices within the organisation.
The second development area proposed by this GEP relates to the ongoing integration of diversity and inclusion in research practices at RUMO academia and staff development. The goal is to integrate dimensions of gender, ethnicity, nationality, age, ability, and others in research and educational programs within RUMO academia, including elaborating and providing training to staff and management.
To achieve this goal, this GEP proposes strategies to a) promote the inclusion of gender, ethnicity, nationality, age, ability, and other dimensions in the research developed by the organisation; b) promote inclusivity and diversity in the research proposals within the people conducting the studies; c) promote the integration of gender, ethnicity, nationality, age, ability, and others variables in the development of training and informative materials.
To measure the effectiveness of this strategy, this GEP suggests that RUMO commits to 1) ensure the disaggregating research data concerning gender, ethnicity, nationality, age, ability, and others when relevant; 2) ensure the usage of inclusive language and images in research materials; 3) ensure that staff and management engagement in workshops, training, and guidance concerning equality of opportunity, diversity of representation, inclusion of individuals part of historical marginalised groups and justice in fairness in the institutional practices and policies.
The third area of change proposed by this GEP relates to the work-life balance in the organisation's context. The goal is to promote equality in terms of RUMO organisation culture, creating an inclusive and flexible environment for people of all genders, ethnicities, nationalities, ages, abilities, and others, enabling them to find a balance between their work and life commitments.
To achieve this goal, this GEP proposes strategies to a) provide the equality officer with the tools to monitor and promote the implementation of the GEP; b) engage in internal and external communication in promoting the values of the organisation concerning equality, diversity, inclusion and justice; c) Integration of gender, ethnicity, nationality, age, ability, and others in the planning across the organisation; d) Integration of flexible and inclusive workplace relevant policies; d) diagnostic of needs and request of support from the staff and management, including in matters relating to parental and family needs.
To measure the effectiveness of this strategy, this GEP suggests that RUMO commits to 1) deliver external and internal communication on statements supporting equality, diversity, inclusion, and justice. 2) ensure the implementation surveys for the staff and management to assess satisfaction scores concerning experiences in the workplace, organisation culture, management styles, discrimination, and harassment experiences within the organisation; 3) ensure the integration of gender, ethnicity, nationality, age, ability, and others in RUMO planning and strategy; 4) ensure the creation of flexible policies for the necessities of the workforce, including parental and family need and working hours.
The fourth area of change proposed by this GEP relates to creating awareness and guidance to prevent and oppose to any form of harassment and discrimination within the platform. The goal is to safeguard and promote mental, physical, and emotional health and well-being among all workforce collaborating with the organisation.
To achieve this goal, this GEP proposes strategies to a) educate all workforce about biases, discrimination, and exclusion, actively combating harassment based on gender, ethnicity, nationality, age, ability, and others; b) establish spaces for continuous dialogue and collective work towards the elimination of bias, stereotypes, and prejudice.
To measure the effectiveness of this strategy, this GEP suggests that RUMO commits to 1) ensuring that the workforce of collaborators at all levels of the organisation is engaged in training and materials designed to eliminate any form of violence, unconscious biases and harassment based on gender, ethnicity, nationality, age, ability, and others; 2) ensure that reporting systems are available allowing any member of the workforce to relate any unfair, discriminatory, and exclusionary experience openly or anonymously; 3) establish a zero-tolerance policy in managing promptly cases of discrimination and harassment, incorporating transparency measures in handling these cases.
This proposed GEP from RUMO stems from the acknowledgement that implementing such a plan requires continuous reflective work. The establishment of a successful gender equality plan requires an organisational commitment in coping and embracing change by incorporating reflexivity. In other words, this GEP proposes establishing self-monitoring, considering incremental consequences and knowledge as part of an ongoing engagement with reflecting on daily development (Wroblewski, 2019). With that, the organisation is working towards raising awareness and acting for fairness and justice concerning gender issues and their intersections.
This GEP considers the understanding of gender as a continuum and advocates for Intersectional collaborative engagement with the organisation's workforce. With that, this GEP aims to explore and incorporate the theory of intersectionality, a critical inquiry into the overlapping of identities and accumulation of experiences of oppression and discrimination (Armstrong & Sullivan, 2023; Crenshaw, 1991). In committing to reflecting gender issues with intersectional lenses, RUMO is promoting the increase of analysis of organisational issues related to equality, inclusion, diversity, and justice that considers and emphasizes that gender, ethnicity, nationality, age, and ability are not separated dimensions but intertwined aspects of lived experience, a departure point in ensuring equality of opportunities.
Finally, this GEP considers that the engagement in equality of opportunity, diversity of representation, inclusion of lived experience and justice and fairness is a collective business. In adopting this reflexive positioning, RUMO as an organisation is committed to continuously invite its workforce and also the service users to dialogue and ongoing learning and unlearning (Mignolo & Walsh, 2018) concerning systems of oppression and privilege dynamics within the organisation. For that, RUMO agrees that the implementation of this plan is a process and not a product or a mere guideline.
The organisation agrees that this GEP points to the importance of commitment and action aligned to humanisation. Thus, the success of this plan implementation is due to continuous research within the organisation concerning its culture and practices, collaborative work with the workforce, and proactiveness in efforts for an equal, secure, innovative and humane workplace.
Author: Delso Batista, MSc
Approved by Executive Management:
Carolina Oliveira Borges, MSc | Clinical Director at RUMO, President at IFA
Francisco Valente Gonçalves, PhD | R&D Director at RUMO, Vice-president at IFA
Advance, H. E. (2021). The Transformed UK Athena SWAN Charter. November, 12, 2021.
Armstrong, J., & Sullivan, A. (2023). A Critical Analysis of Athena Swan as a Policy-Scoring Scheme. Available at SSRN 4546708.
Crenshaw, K. (1991). Women of color at the center: Selections from the third national conference on women of color and the law: Mapping the margins: Intersectionality, identity politics, and violence against women of color. Stanford Law Review, 43(6), 1241-1279.
Dieses. (2022). Dieses Network Gender Equality Plan.
European, C. (2009). Toolkit: Gender in EU-funded Research. Luxembourg: Office for Official Publications of the European Communities.
Jordão, C., Carvalho, T., & Diogo, S. (2020). Implementing Gender Equality Plans through an action-research approach: Challenges and resistances. Proceedings of the ECMR Proceedings, Aveiro, Portugal, 124-131.
Mignolo, W. D., & Walsh, C. E. (2018). On decoloniality: Concepts, analytics, praxis. Duke University Press.
Palmén, R., & Schmidt, E. K. (2019). Analysing facilitating and hindering factors for implementing gender equality interventions in R&I: Structures and processes. Evaluation and program planning, 77, 101726.
SETU, S. E. T. U.-. (2022). South East Technological University – Gender Equality Action Plan. https://www.wit.ie/about_wit/our_community/equality-diversity-inclusion-at-wit/gender-equality-action-plan/
Wroblewski, A. (2019). TARGET: Taking a Reflexive approach to Gender Equality for Institutional Transformation. The Project Repository Journal PRJ, 2, 94-97.