Promote Cross-Institute Change

By forming a collective of five eminent medical research institutes (MRIs), WiSPP has established a unique engine with which to promote and measure change in gender equity in science.

We are committed to a shared agenda, have agreed on shared measurements, have undertaken a range of mutually reinforcing activities and established a strong relationship of trust with the support of directors and engagement of staff from the five WiSPP MRIs.


WiSPP works using a collective impact framework. A key feature of collective impact is to develop agreed metrics that measure progress. This critical first stage in the development of our change initiative is to understand the current state and what the future desired state looks like. Base-line (within an organisation) and benchmark (comparisons with other organisations) data are both necessary in order to design change initiatives and to measure progress.

This involves:

  1. Defining the critical lag and lead indicators

  2. Establishing reliable and valid measures; and

  3. Collecting data on these measures to establish a base-line with which to measure progress. 

In 2016, WiSPP collaborated with the five MRIs to develop an agreed set of metrics and have now collected baseline data from each institute. The metrics included lag indicators, which enable organisations to understand their current state, and lead indicators that measure prerequisites to change thereby enabling organisations to be pro-active about managing gender equality outcomes. The chosen metrics align closely with both the Workplace Gender Equality Agency (WGEA) and Science in Australia Gender Equity (SAGE) frameworks but have been adapted to the specific context of Medical Research Institutes.