Athena SWAN Silver Award

Diversity and Equality Committee

“I am delighted to announce the Department of Computer Science has been awarded the Athena SWAN Silver Award from the Equality Challenge Unit. The award recognises our commitment to diversity and equality.

We received our Bronze Athena SWAN award in 2013. The process of applying for that award caused us to think fundamentally about diversity and equality in the Department, and to make some important changes to the way that we work together. Since then, we have implemented an action plan which has further raised awareness of diversity and equality issues in the Department, and formalised many improvements in our procedures. I am very proud that all of our staff have engaged so enthusiastically with this process; not in order to win awards, but because we feel that diversity and equality is key to who we are as a Department.

The current Athena SWAN award endorses our plans going forward, and also recognises our achievements over the past four years. Of those, the following are of particular note:

  • The recent promotion of two women to personal chairs; both have indicated that the mentoring support they received from senior staff played an important role in their career development.
  • Raising awareness of unconscious bias through well-attended training sessions for staff.
  • A thorough review of our promotional literature and web site to address any issues with gender bias.
  • Development of a supplementary brochure for undergraduate applicants targeted specifically at women, which introduces female role models from the staff and explains the dedicated support and activities that are available to female students (including a WomenInCompSci society).
  • We co-organised the 2016 BCSWomen Lovelace Colloquium in Sheffield, and have supported CodeFirst:Girls and DjanoGirls to run regular courses at the University.
  • Outreach activities for school groups which have been successful in achieving gender parity.

I’d like to thank all of our staff for engaging so wholeheartedly with the aims of Athena SWAN. This award confirms that diversity and equality are embedded firmly in the culture of the Department of Computer Science, making it a great place for all of us to work.”

Professor Guy Brown
Head of Department

For more information see our Athena SWAN page