You can now find the University's latest news, events and blogs at

Gender Pay Gap

All organisations with more than 250 staff are now required by the Government to publish differences in average pay for men and women this year, and every year thereafter.

Equality, diversity and inclusion underpins all our work and is at the heart of who we are and what we do.

At the University of Portsmouth we use a grading system so that men and women are given equal pay for work of equal value. However, like most organisations, the more difficult challenge we face is the distribution of men and women between different roles and hence being rewarded at different grades.

On 31 March 2017, there was an average pay gap of 14.7% at the University. This is lower than the wider economy (17.4%) and lower than the Higher Education sector (15.5%). Using our own internal measures, we have also steadily reduced our gender pay gap since 2005 when it was 24.1%.

Professor Graham Galbraith, Vice-Chancellor, said: “Closing the gender pay gap is a priority for our University and we have been working towards this for a number of years . However, we know more needs to be done across society and at the University. The open publication of results by large organisations like ourselves is a positive step as it highlights the scale of change still needed. It provides for us a renewed focus on how we can do better, by building on the work already done to take tangible and sustained action to improve gender equality.”

Professor Sherria Hoskins, Dean of Science, is the University’s champion for the Aurora Programme – a career development programme for women. Professor Hoskins said: “I’ve been very proud to champion the Aurora Programme, which has positively helped a number of women at the University by providing role models, mentoring and learning to boost their professional development.  It’s important that the University as a whole is committed to remove any potential gender bias and to ensure that we have an inclusive culture that values all staff.”

Why is there a gender pay gap?

We have a significantly higher proportion of women in lower paid roles delivering key support services in areas such as catering and administration. In the past, these roles have traditionally attracted female applicants as they tend to provide flexibility around part time working, which is attractive to those with caring responsibilities.

Another contributing factor is the higher proportion of males in more senior academic roles including among our professors. This is a concern for the University and a wider known issue across the Higher Education sector.

How will we close the gap?

We need to increase the number of women in leadership positions across the University, particularly in academic roles, and we also need to ensure that roles at all levels across the University attract a diverse pool of applicants.

To help achieve this we will be working on the following actions:

  • Undertake a wide-ranging strategic review of recruitment and selection approaches across the University
  • Apply for an Athena Swan Silver Award in 2021, building on our Athena Swan Bronze Award which we’ve held since 2014 for our work to address gender equality
  • Enhance our maternity and adoption leave provision, and raise awareness of flexible working and shared parental leave
  • Develop our apprenticeship programme to support career development for existing and new staff
  • Continue our commitment to the Aurora and Springboard programmes, which support women’s career development and promotion prospects
  • Further promote our Staff Mentoring Scheme to help staff achieve career goals and promote a culture of equality and diversity
  • Assess our revised online Performance and Development Review (PDR) scheme, linked to a new Career Development Framework, which is currently being piloted with the intention of rolling this out across the University in 2018/19.

The University’s gender pay gap report has been published on our website. Reports from other organisations, including other universities, can be found on the Government’s website.

UoP News © 2019 All Rights Reserved