Gender equality is not only a fundamental human right, but a necessary foundation for a peaceful, prosperous and sustainable world.
– United Nations

At VU, we are committed to achieving gender equality in all that we do.

We strive to afford people the same access, resources, opportunities and successes regardless of gender.

Victoria University is a proud recipient of the Workplace Gender Equality Agency Employer of Choice for Gender Equality citation.

5 Gender equality (female, male symbol with =)

Research projects & engagement 2020–21

Australia’s Gender Health Tracker report card 2020, highlights differences in gender-based health needs and risks, and highlighted that current policy, funding and service models are failing women, with serious social and economic impacts.

The UNFPA publishes each year a report on the State of the World Population which in 2020 was dedicated to the rights of women. Bruce Rasmussen of VISES provided modelling and analysis of the impact of child marriage and costs of interventions to eliminate child marriage.

The United Nations Population Fund, Avenir Health, John Hopkins University and VISES researchers collaborated on assessing the impact of COVID-19 on family planning and ending gender-based violence.

HealthWest Partnership and Victoria University worked together on Project Momentum: Working Together with Men to engage younger male students and staff in prevention of violence against women. The project created a guide for creating and supporting projects of this kind. The project conducted a number of activities in 2020 for exploring ideas of manhood and the narratives surrounding ‘real men’, including the Enter the Man Box art installation for VU orientation week and workshops on the Man Box Story.

A Level Playing Field: the case for investing in women’s sport is a collaboration by VU, Australian Women in Sport Advisory Group, Male Champions of Change and Price Waterhouse Coopers to advocate for the equality for women in sport participation and employment.

Professor Ramon Spaaij and his research group have been instrumental in changing sport participation to be more inclusive. The Change Makers Project has resulted in a community of practice of more than 50 local sports club representatives implementing inclusion projects to promote gender equity by increasing the number of girls and women participating and more women in club leadership and coaching. The ‘Participation versus performance: managing (dis)ability, gender and cultural diversity in junior sport’ project resulted in a number of institutional changes in 2020 within community sports clubs, local authorities and state sporting associations to be more inclusive of diverse members of society, including recruiting and mentoring women to become part of their committee and governance structures, Professor Spaaij said.

Girls and women are less likely to continue participating in sports where they don’t feel welcome and their achievements are undervalued. This leads to issues of retention, and girls and women losing out on the numerous health and social benefits provided by community sport participation.

A study by Professor Clare Hanlon examined the role that uniforms play in increasing the confidence of girls to participate in sport and physical activity. The study, funded by a $20,000 Change Our Game research grant from the Victorian State Government, Office for Women in Sport and Recreation, in collaboration with S-Trend Sportswear, surveyed more than 300 Victorian girls aged between 12 and 18. The findings indicated that feeling comfortable and not exposed in the uniform was a critical factor to feeling positive about sports participation.

Professor Clare Hanlon was also invited to be a member of the International Women’s Group of Sport, Capability and Knowledge Steering Group.

Victoria University Business School launched Australia’s first Female Quotient Lounge, as part of a global movement to advance gender equality for women in business. They have become an influential female-led community initiative, activating change at events across industries, universities, and organisations, including the World Economic Forum.

Future Female 2020 was presented by VU and Study Melbourne, to equip international women students with the knowledge and inspiration to bridge the gender gap and to work towards a fairer future.


Lauren Sherf shoots a goal for the the Raiders