Frequently Asked Questions

The Federal Lawon Equality between Women and Men (LEg art. 4) provides a very clear definition: "Discriminatory behaviour means any unwelcome behaviour of a sexual nature or any other behaviour based on gender that violates the dignity of the person in the workplace, in particular through threats, promising benefits, imposing constraints or exerting pressure of any kind on a person in order to obtain favours of a sexual nature from him".
In short, and in everyday life, this means any behaviour with a sexual connotation, or based on gender (sexism), not desired by the person who is confronted with it, whether it occurs on University premises, in a library, an office or outside, during conferences, breaks, Department events. This also includes electronic exchanges (cyber harassment), private telephone calls, but also daring posters or jokes that create a sexist and stereotypical work environment, which is called environmental harassment.

Any belief or conviction that leads to consider people as inferior because of their gender or sexual orientation or to limit them to their sexual dimension. But also, any comment, gesture, behaviour or practice based on an unjustified distinction between persons on the basis of their gender or sexual orientation. Sexism leads to adverse consequences in terms of well-being, educational or working conditions, or even employment.
For example, believing that women would be more gifted for subordinate multitasking or administrative positions, or that they would be too emotional for positions of responsibility, is a gender bias.
Ordinary sexism is defined as all comments, attitudes and behaviours based on stereotypes of sex, gender, directly or indirectly, directed against a person, or a group of persons. Although seemingly innocuous, ordinary sexism has the purpose or effect, consciously or unconsciously, of delegitimizing, inferiorizing, insidiously or even "benignly", and altering their psychological or physical health.
This sexism is revealed on a daily basis, for example, through sexist jokes and comments, remarks about motherhood, negative stereotypes, incivility or disrespect, unsolicited compliments or criticism about physical appearance and exclusionary practices.

Psychological harassment is also called moral harassment, mobbing or bullying. For the Swiss Federal Court, it is "a series of hostile statements and/or actions, repeated frequently over a fairly long period of time, by which one or more persons seek to isolate, marginalize or even exclude a person in the workplace". This can be perpetrated by a single person or a group from the same or different hierarchical levels.

Whenever tagged with the word confidential, the internal and external resources mentioned on this website ensure the confidentiality of the procedure carried out by the applicant. The guarantee of confidentiality applies to both the procedure itself and its content. Should it be necessary to contact a third party, such as the respondent, the hierarchy or the human resources division, such contact will only be initiated with the agreement of the requesting person. The resource does not take any action without the person's agreement.

Only under exceptional circumstances can it be justified for an internal or external resource to waive its duty of confidentiality without the agreement of the person who called upon it for protection and/or security reasons. This is particularly the case when a person is in danger or may represent a threat to himself or to others.