Case Study: Workplace sexism and sexual harassment

Tackling Workplace Sexism and Sexual Harassment through Bystander Action

With sexism and sexual harassment identified as a key talent drain in their industry, engineering leader Aurecon embarked on a five-part social norms email campaign that used behavioural insights to encourage bystanders to join colleagues in tackling inappropriate behaviours.

Aurecon worked in partnership with the Behavioural Insights Team (BIT), a global social purpose organisation that generates and applies behavioural insights to inform policy, and the Victorian Health Promotion Foundation (VicHealth) to develop and implement the campaign.

DCA CEO Lisa Annese joined representatives from Aurecon in conversation:

Penny Rush, Diversity, Equity & Inclusion Manager, will share Aurecon’s proactive, collective process that clearly defined the behaviours and language which allow sexism and sexual harassment to thrive in workplace culture. Then she will discuss how they set about replacing these with an inclusive culture, where sexism and sexual harassment became elevated to the level of physical workplace safety, and where everyone became responsible for creating a safe, thriving workplace for all.

Jessica Dell, Senior Marketing and Communications Advisor, Queensland, will outline how Aurecon’s Bystander Campaign has had tangible benefits both on her personal and professional life, and what it means to her as a woman working in STEM.

Event Feedback

  • ‘Really great session again today. Lisa did a great job facilitating the panel and the panelists were so engaging and interesting. Very grateful to Penny for sharing the email templates in the resources after the session too, so generous.’ – Anon, event participant
  • ‘Really excellent content, keen to see more similar webinars where there is a pragmatic focus on moving the D&I needle.’ –  Anon, event participant
  • ‘Interestingly a subject matter that will have a significant impact on productivity from the “Top Down”  Both organisational and cultural change is required. Evaluation of the respect at work report will be an interesting read.’ –  Anon, event participant
  • ‘Bystander 60mins- was great to hear the experience from an organisation that introduced Bystander principles, really loved the facilitator who created conversation and also realness ‘bring your best self to work rather than full self’ stuck with me. Some practical tips we can use when planning Bystander training in our organisation.’ –  Anon, event participant

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