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The University signs the Diversity Charter on its 10th Anniversary

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Published on Wednesday, 18 May 2022

The University of Luxembourg signs the Luxembourg Diversity Charter on the occasion of the Charter’s 10th Anniversary, taking place on Wednesday 18 May at 17.00 at the Maison du Savoir (Auditorium 3.500) on Belval Campus. The topic of the event is “Our University and Diversity”.

Stéphane Pallage, Rector of the University of Luxembourg, Corinne Cahen, Luxembourg Minister for Family, Integration and the Greater Region, and Ouissem Belgacem, former footballer, discuss questions about inclusion and how to build an inclusive workplace.

The Diversity Charter Lëtzebuerg is open for signature to Luxembourgish organisations that commit to diversity through concrete actions beyond legal obligations.

Structured around six articles, the Charter provides guidelines on how to promote cohesion and social equity, involving employees and partners throughout the process.

The University of Luxembourg is one of more than 200 signatories of the Diversity Charter Lëtzebuerg which includes the public, private and voluntary sectors. Ninth Charter in the European Union, it is part of the European platform of Diversity Charters.

Why Diversity?

The concept of diversity first appeared in the workplace in the 1990s in North America and then in Europe.

Since the 1960s, employers were encouraged to implement "neutral" (Equal Employment Opportunities) or "positive action" (Affirmative Actions) management practices. The first aim is to prevent discrimination. The latter ensure the hiring, promotion and retention of members of protected groups (women, minorities, etc.).

In the 1990s, these policies were challenged because of their stigmatising nature, and the potential conflicts involved. "Equal opportunities" shifted to "diversity management".

This evolution reflects significant demographic, economic, legal and cultural changes. The notion of "diversity management" is based on the recognition of individual differences. In Europe, first and foremost the affiliates of Anglo-Saxon multinationals have been pioneers in this field, followed since the 2000s by other national companies to implement "diversity" programmes, policies or actions.

Since the 21st century, many changes have influenced our ways of thinking and management in order to meet economic challenges, such as demographic changes, the globalisation of markets, the mobility of people, intergenerational and intercultural cohabitation, the ageing of the population, the evolving social and parental roles of men and women, and finally the extension of the length of professional careers.

Luxembourg, the crossroads of the European Union, does not escape societal change. Diversity is at the heart of its functioning democracy and an important factor for professional life. This is why the country launched a Diversity Charter to facilitate this transition, both for companies and for society as a whole. Within the European Union, 24 other European countries have established Diversity Charters.

Diversity at the University of Luxembourg

The University of Luxembourg is a model of multicultural and societal diversity. It currently counts 55.6 % foreign students from 135 nationalities across the globe. 23 recognised student associations and clubs voice the concerns of all the student community in all aspects of student life. In addition, the University’s staff members originate from over 90 different countries. As part of its commitment to diversity, the University supports Gender Equality through the Gender Equality Policy approved on 21 May 2021.

The Diversity Charter online

More information about the Luxembourg Diversity Charter: www.chartediversite.lu

Foto: © Emmanuel Claude-Focalize

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