Discrimination and harassment

The University of Gothenburg aims to be a place free from discrimination and harassment. Everyone, including staff and students, has a responsibility to treat each other with respect. If you have information about a suspected case of discrimination or harassment, we encourage you to report it.

What is discrimination?

The Discrimination act describes what constitutes discrimination, who can be subjected to it, and from whom. A simplified description of the legal definition of discrimination is when a person is treated disfavourably or when a person's dignity is violated. The disfavourable treatment or the violation of a person's dignity must also be related to one of the seven grounds of discrimination:

  • sex
  • transgender identity or expression
  • ethnicity
  • religion or other belief
  • disability
  • sexual orientation
  • age.

The law prohibits six forms of discrimination: direct discrimination, indirect discrimination, inadequate accessibility, harassment, sexual harassment and instructions to discriminate. The prohibition of discrimination applies in certain areas in society, education is one of these areas.

More information about discrimination

 On the website of the Discrimination Ombudsman (Diskrimineringsombudsmannen) you will find information about discrimination according to the Discrimination Act.

Diskrimineringsombudsmannen: What is discrimination?

The University's responsibility

The University of Gothenburg is responsible for ensuring that you, as a student, are not subjected to discrimination. We have an obligation to work with proactive measures to prevent and counteract discrimination and promote equal rights and opportunities. This work is described in the Discrimination Act.

If the University learns that a student has experienced or is experiencing harassment in connection with the activities, we have an obligation to investigate whether harassment or sexual harassment has occurred and, if so, take action to stop it.

How to report suspicion of discrimination and/or harassment

Turn to someone att your department

If you have information of suspected discrimination and/or some form of harassment, you should should turn to your department to give information about a suspected case of discrimination or harassment.

If you don't know who to turn to, you can contact your Head of Department. You can also contact another employee at the University. This person is then required to inform the Head of Department.

Remember that if you speak to a study counsellor, you need to express clearly that they may break their duty of professional secrecy and are allowed to inform the Head of Department.

If you want to remain anonymous

The University of Gothenburg always recommends that you make a report where it is clear who is making the report. It may feel reassuring to report the incident anonymously. However, anonymous reports will make it challenging for the University to investigate what has happened. Sometimes the person responsible for the investigation may need to talk to you, or others, to collect more information about what has happened.

Non-retalliation policy

No person at the University is allowed to impact you negatively because you have made a report. This is referred to as a non-retaliation policy (repressalieförbud) according to the Discrimination Act (diskrimineringslagen). If you believe yourself to be the subject of reprisals, you should notify the University of this.