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Bronze Athena SWAN awards for School of Geography and School of Electronic Engineering and Computer Science

Monday 24 October 2016

The School of Geography and School of Electronic Engineering and Computer Science (EECS) achieved bronze in the latest round of the Athena SWAN Charter awards, which recognise commitment to tackling gender inequality in higher education. 

This is the first award for the School of Geography, who were able to submit under the expanded Athena SWAN criteria, which now covers gender equality in arts, humanities, social sciences, business and law departments (AHSSBL), including both academic and professional services staff. Geography is the first school at QMUL to receive accreditation under the new criteria.

Professor Alison Blunt, Head of Geography and co-chair – together with Dr Anna Dulic-Sills, Head of Administration – of the School of Geography Self-Assessment Team (SAT), commented: “We are very proud of this achievement and recognition of the School’s commitment to gender equality for all students and staff. Equality underpins our strategic aims, values and ethos, and is essential in achieving the School’s mission of delivering outstanding research, education and career opportunities for all staff and students.

“Our new Equality and Diversity Group is implementing our action plan and building on our success by preparing an application for a silver award. Anna and I would like to thank Ailsa McGregor and members of the SAT for all of their work in achieving this award. The team members are: Fran Darlington-Pollock, Lucy Diggens, Kate Heppell, Al James, Ashok Kumar, Andrew Loveland, Cathy McIlwaine, Ayesha Sabri, Olivia Sheringham, working alongside student representatives: Kreepa Mehta, Chipo Meke, Adam Packer and Suzy Solley.”

EECS successfully renewed their bronze award status for a further three years. Professor Geraint Wiggins, Head of EECS, commented: “This builds on our earlier success in obtaining a bronze award in 2012. The bronze renewal recognises that we have gone beyond simply identifying problem areas in relation to gender inequality, and have provided evidence of progress made against our previous bronze application and action plan.

“I would like to thank Professor Elaine Chew, our Athena SWAN Champion, and the whole team behind our application, for the substantial amount of work that has gone into achieving this award. The team members were: Kat Agres, Sharon Cording, Félix Cuadrado, Paul Curzon, Ioana Dalca, Elizabeth Deacon, Hatice Gunes, Dorien Herremans, Andrew McPherson, Mehrnoosh Sadrzadeh, Jesus Requena Carrion, Edmund Robinson, Dan Stowell, Michael Tautschnig, Siying Wang, Caroline Wardle, and Graham White.”

Athena SWAN Charter at QMUL

Originally a charter which focused on the progression of women academics and researchers in science, technology, engineering, mathematics and medicine (STEMM), the Athena SWAN Charter was extended in 2015 to include gender equality work undertaken in AHSSBL, and in professional and support roles, and for trans staff and students. The charter now recognises work undertaken to address gender equality more broadly, and not just barriers to progression that affect women.

The university is proud that all STEMM departments hold either a Bronze or Silver Athena SWAN award to demonstrate their commitment to gender equality. QMUL currently holds an institutional bronze award for its achievements, and will be submitting for the silver award at the end of November. Read more about Athena SWAN at QMUL on the HR website.

Since QMUL became an Athena SWAN member in 2005, there has been significant record of activities to support gender equality and demonstrate the impact of good practices across QMUL. The Diversity and Inclusion team will be working with schools, institutes and departments to continue embedding gender equality at Queen Mary.

If you would like to find out more about us and how you can get involved, please contact us at: hr-equality@qmul.ac.uk.

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