Equality in terms of gender, sexual orientation and identity

The University is committed to promoting equal opportunities for men and women and at combating all kinds of discrimination in University life.

That is why it has taken action on behalf of its staff and the University community as a whole, by organising seminars, hosting public meetings, setting up educational projects and pursuing national and international research projects.

The University of Milan has been collaborating with other universities for a number of years now, with the aim of broadening the effects of its work by setting up academic networks and synergies that have a strong interdisciplinary approach. 

University observatory, networks and collaborations
Gender-based violence observatory

Launched to raise awareness against this rampant phenomenon, the project involves the academic world, students, judges, lawyers, journalists and violence centres.

Along with the University of Milan, the founders of the observatory are the Court of Milan, the women's shelter Casa di Accoglienza delle Donne Maltrattate di Milano, and the magazine Il Giallo, published by Cairo.

Un.I.RE: standing together against violence

This University is part of a 10-strong network of Italian universities combating violence, which is working towards initiating permanent cooperation on this topic with the involvement of all Italian universities and European networks, including cooperation with the Council of Europe.

The objective of the network is to launch the educational, scientific, social and cultural activities envisaged by the Istanbul Convention.

Gender Equality Centre

An inter-university centre for research into gender equality, which comprises 6 universities in Milan: the University of Milan, the Bicocca University, Milan Polytechnic University, Iulm, San Raffaele University and Bocconi University.

The Centre is focussed on pursuing ongoing research and positive action regarding equality in general and contributing to increasing and ensuring the respect of women's dignity and worth.

Gender Balance

his is an essential tool in promoting equal opportunities in universities and to ensure the presence of gender perspectives in the University's policies, which is also important in terms of transparency and budget allocation.

In particular, Gender Balance is a document that on the one hand acts as a snapshot of the distribution of gender throughout the departments of the University and the participation of men and women in its management bodies. On the other hand, it is also useful for monitoring the actions that have been implemented to favour gender balance.

The Gender Balance is also aimed at assessing the impact of those policies on men and women, including financially.

The University has launched a phased plan, setting up a think tank that is tasked with the drafting and content creation of the Gender Balance in general, in accordance with CRUI guidelines (conference of Italian University rectors). 

Gender and language

Models and behaviours are shaped by language, and social inequalities are perpetuated by discourse. In addition to contributing to the affirmation of individual and collective identities, words are a very powerful means of hiding or revealing a whole realm, of denying or affirming rights.

Despite the great changes that have taken place in the social representations of gender and sexual orientation, there is still androcentric language, both at the individual and institutional level, which must be changed to give visibility to the roles and functions of women, and avoid discriminatory use of language.

The University of Milan has adopted the Guidelines for gender-neutral language in administrative texts and institutional communication, with a view to , as well as simplifying legislative and administrative texts. Moreover, the University will launch a permanent roundtable and cultural and language training programmes geared to all staff.

Sexual orientation and identity

The University is active in the fight to protect human rights and children's rights: in particular, in terms of orientation and sexual identity, it is of fundamental importance to combat homophobia, biphobia and transphobia.In this respect it is essential to pursue action aimed at eliminating homophobia and to strive for the acknowledgment of rights within the University of Milan for transitioning individuals.

An example of this kind of action is the UNIMI-Inclusive Project, which in collaboration with the University of Milan and UNAR (the National Anti-discrimination Body), is aimed at introducing students and future students to the range of activities underway at the University to combat all forms of discrimination, including relating to sexual orientation.

In 2018, the University of Milan issued a policy regulating the activation and management of an identity alias for transitioning students, which promotes the acknowledgment of the rights of transitioning students at the University. The process entails activating a specific administrative process for anyone who requests it that allows students to acquire an identity alias for the purpose of the change of records further to transitioning. 

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