Good Practice Scheme

The BPA/SWIP Good Practice Scheme

The British Philosophical Association and Society for Women in Philosophy (UK) are pleased to announce the launch of our Good Practice Scheme. The Scheme aims to assist UK philosophy departments, learned societies and journals in ensuring that they have policies and procedures in place that encourage the representation of women in philosophy.

How the Scheme works

  • Departments (or equivalent units), learned societies and journal editorial boards consider whether and how to implement the recommendations.
  • If they decide to implement the recommendations, they come up with a clear plan for implementing the recommendations, with timescale.
  • They alert the BPA so that a central list of participating institutions can be kept. They are then also free to advertise their participation (and use the GPS logo) on their own website, in promotional literature, etc.
  • There will be no oversight or auditing by the BPA or SWIP. We rely on the institutions themselves to ensure that they stick to their own implementation plans and, once complete, continue to implement the recommendations. If members of participating institutions (including staff, students, learned society members, etc.) are not convinced that the recommendations are being adequately implemented, we encourage them to raise the problem with the Head of Department, Director of learned society, or journal editor (as appropriate) in the first instance.

Good Practice Scheme documents and resources

  • General guidance
  • Download all the documents as one file (but please don’t forget to click the links below for additional information and resources): pdf / word

Subscribing institutions

See our list of departments, learned societies, journals and research projects that have committed to implementing and maintaining the Good Practice Scheme recommendations.

More information about the Good Practice Scheme document on gender bias can be found here.

Conferences and seminar series

Download the Good Practice Scheme document on conferences & seminar series: pdf / word

Further information:


Download the Good Practice Scheme document on caregivers: pdf / word

Sexual harassment

Download the Good Practice Scheme document on sexual harassment: pdf / word

Further information:

Staff-student relationships

Download the Good Practice Scheme document on staff-student relationships: pdf / word

Further information:

  • David Archard, ‘Exploited Consent’, Journal of Social Philosophy, 25 (1994): 92-101 (institutional subscription required)

For Research Projects

Download the Good Practice Scheme document on research projects: pdf / word

For Learned Societies

Download the Good Practice Scheme document for learned societies: pdf / word

For Journal Editors/Editorial Boards

Download the Good Practice Scheme document for journal editors: pdf / word

  • If you are considering an explicit editorial policy on reviewing, take a look at the one from Cognition. You might also consider having an explicit policy of reviewee-reviewer anonymity, e.g. by explicitly asking reviewers to decline to review if they know who wrote the paper.

Good Practice Scheme: general guidance

Download the Good Practice Scheme general guidance. This gives some information on what the scheme is about, what counts as ’adopting’ the recommendations, etc.

Further information

  • If you need some persuading, please read Shannon Dea’s presentation on why you should adopt our Good Practice recommendations: ’The Nice Bloke Trap’.

Gender Equality Charter Mark/Athena SWAN Scheme

If you haven’t heard of this, check out the Equality Challenge Unit’s website or read Paul Lodge’s presentation, which outlines the basic principles behind the pilot scheme that was run in 2013-14, and how it worked. Please note that the ECU now seems to be planning to bring (what was to be) the GECM scheme under the Athena SWAN scheme that already exists for the sciences. The new humanities scheme is expected to be launched during 2015.

It looks as though implementing the BPA/SWIP Good Practice Scheme recommendations will put departments in a very strong position to demonstrate that they are addressing many of the issues that Athena SWAN is aimed at, and should therefore make it a lot easier to achieve an Athena SWAN bronze award. However, we do not, at this stage, regard the Athena SWAN scheme as a replacement for the Good Practice Scheme, since the latter covers some areas and issues not (at least currently) covered by the former.

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