The George Institute’s Panel Pledge
In March 2020, co-founder and Principal Director of The George Institute, Robyn Norton launched the TGI Panel Pledge, a new initiative as part of the Institute’s ongoing support for gender equity and diversity.
By signing the TGI Panel Pledge, the Institute’s staff commit to ensuring that once invited to speak on a panel, they will enquire about the event organiser's effort to achieve gender balance and a diversity of speakers on the panel.
Unlike similar pledges from other organisations that ask people to enquire about the gender balance of panels and forums they are invited to speak at, the TGI Panel Pledge is intersectional. This means not only will they enquire about the gender balance of the speakers, but they will also seek to find out about whether there is a diverse selection of panelists.
Since launching, over a hundred staff and students from The George Institute’s offices have signed the pledge, illustrating a terrific display of support for diversity and gender equity.
Here are some of the reasons why The George Institute’s staff and students say they signed the Panel Pledge:
Yuan Li, Head of Lifestyle and Nutrition, TGI China:
“I was deeply affected by gender inequality as the hometown where I grew up had a preference for boys over girls. So I am glad to sign up to the Panel Pledge to support gender equality and diversity."
Gian Luca Di Tanna, Head of Statistics, TGI Australia:
“A shared commitment is necessary for a change that is primarily cultural. Nothing has to be taken for granted and sometimes we are all victim of unconscious biases which still affect our societies. This initiative is an important response to the current need to promote respect and celebrate diversity and I therefore hope that it is a step towards the creation of a more open, inclusive and fair environment."
Jagnoor Jagnoor, Senior Research Fellow, TGI Injury:
“When my daughter changed schools, one night she asked me what my favourite feeling is (that moment when you just want to shut your eyes!) … I asked her what was hers, and she said 'belongingness'. She was 7. The pledge is about recognising 'my privilege' and a small step towards inclusion and belonging, because that is our currency to be effective researchers, teams, organisations and a better, more just, and equitable society."
Kenneth Yakubu, Research Assistant and PhD student in Health Systems Science:
“For me it was easy to sign the pledge – women have played a significant role in my life. A great deal of my personal values have been shaped by women in my family and by others I have been privileged to know and work with. I feel a sense of responsibility to support their voice and promote their wellbeing. Signing the pledge was my own little way of doing this."