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Race Equality Charter

The Race Equality Charter (REC) provides a framework for engagement, critical self-assessment and action planning on race (in)equality. Adopting this framework allows us to identify our own good practice and areas for further positive action.

The REC framework is led by Advance HE and builds on the experience and methodology of the Athena Swan Charter. There are two award levels: Bronze and Silver. 

The University was proud to be one of the 31 higher education institutions involved in the trial of the REC. Work started in September 2014 and concluded in April 2015. Of the 21 institutions that submitted applications, only eight received the Bronze Award, including the University of Manchester.

Since then, the University of Manchester successfully renewed its Bronze Award status in 2019 and was awarded a Silver Award in 2023. This was in recognition of the impact of race equality actions and initiatives, as well as acknowledgment of progress still to be made. At the time of the award, the University was the second-only higher education institution in the UK to achieve Silver under REC.

Our 2023 REC submission and achievement plan outlines our ambitious commitments to progress race equality at pace.

Several actions have been undertaken from our 2019 REC and Race Matters action plans, enabling our 2023 award, including:

  • The ‘Speak Up! Stand Up!’ active bystander campaign co-delivered by the University and the Students Union
  • A new process, guidance and exit questionnaire for staff leavers to provide better information and insights into the reasons that staff leave
  • Embedding initiatives such as Inclusive Advocacy, StellarHE, Aurora and 100 Black Women Professors Now to support the career progression of academic and PS staff from underrepresented groups
  • The University conducting initial research and publishing its findings into historical links to slavery.

There is only one University-level application made for the REC. The Directorate of Equality, Diversity and Inclusion coordinates and prepares the University application and monitors progress against the action plan that we commit to as part of the application process. The University will be applying for its next award in October 2028.