Key Points
  • Improving the recruitment, retention and attainment of underrepresented student groups
  • Protecting staff and students from discrimination, harassment and bullying
  • Improving staff recruitment practices, retention rates and career progression pathways
  • Reducing pay gaps and addressing the root causes of pay gap issues
  • Creating inclusive university cultures and environments
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Overview
Chaired by:
Alison Johns,
Chief Executive, Advance HE

Speakers include:

  • Amy Norton, Head of Equality, Diversity and Inclusion, Office for Students
  • Fiona Waye, Programme Lead, Inclusion Equality and Diversity, Universities UK
  • Jenny Sherrard, National Head of Equality and Participation, University and College Union
  • Professor Geoff Layer, Vice-Chancellor, University of Wolverhampton and Chair, Disabled Students' Commission
  • Dr Carrie-Anne Myers, Project Lead, Violence at University Pilot Project 2021, City, University of London
  • Khadija Mohammed, Senior Lecturer, University of the West of Scotland and Chair, Tackling Racism on Campus Steering Group
  • Dr Sammy Li, Adviser on Student EDI, University of Birmingham and Convener, LGBT+ Network of Networks in Higher Education
  • Professor Parveen Yaqoob, Deputy Vice Chancellor & Pro-Vice-Chancellor, University of Reading and Chair, Athena Swan Governance Committee
  • Sanchia Alasia, Head of Equality, Diversity and Inclusion, London Southbank University
  • Jiten Patel, Managing Director, Diversync Limited and Formerly Head of Equality, Diversity and Inclusion, The Open University
  • Dr. Gurnam Singh, Associate Professor of Equity of Attainment (PT), Coventry University

    Westminster Insight’s Equality, Diversity and Inclusion (EDI) in Higher Education Digital Conference explores how universities can ensure that staff and students from all protected characteristics are represented, valued and retained.

    Despite great progress being made to mainstream EDI in higher education institutions, there are still significant differences in the recruitment, attainment and employment rates for different groups of students and graduates. Certain minority groups are also still vastly under-represented in the university workforce or face barriers to progression in their careers.

    Join us to hear updates from leading stakeholders and experts from higher education institutions to learn how to improve university access, participation and student success for underrepresented groups. Take away practical solutions to embed EDI into your HR practices to recruit, support and retain a diverse staff group and to ensure equality by getting to the root causes of pay gaps.

    With worrying concerns over a rise in student testimonies of harassment, violence and sexual misconduct, there will be a special focus on how to make institutions safer places to live, work and study by tackling prejudice, discrimination, hate crime and violent behaviour committed against all protected characteristics.

  • Agenda
    Start

    09:00 - 09:10
    Chair's Opening Remarks

     

    Speakers

    Alison Johns Chief Executive, Advance HE

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    09:10 - 09:40
    Key Challenges and Progress to Date in Improving EDI in Higher Education

     
    • Priorities for the OfS for improving student EDI
    • Progress to date and key barriers to mainstreaming EDI in regulatory activities at the OfS
    • Monitoring the outcomes and experiences of different student groups
    • Embedding levers and accountability to help facilitate continuous improvements in EDI
    9:30 - 9:40 Questions and Discussion


    Speakers

    Amy Norton Head of Equality, Diversity and Inclusion, Office for Students

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    09:40 - 10:20
    Panel Discussion: Improving Staff Diversity Through Recruitment, Retention and Career Progression

     
    • Effective recruitment practices to improve diversity; attracting diverse candidates, overcoming unconscious bias and the use of positive action
    • Investing in training, mentoring, personal and professional development to ensure the future pipeline of diverse talent
    • Ensuring progression opportunities and eliminating barriers to advance to senior positions  
    • Improving workplace policies and cultures to retain staff and support inclusion
    • Establishing staff networks
    • Effective pay gap reporting and addressing root causes of pay gap issues
    10:10 - 10:20 Questions and Discussion

    Speakers

    Jiten Patel Managing Director, Diversync Limited and Formerly Head of Equality Diversity and Inclusion, The Open University

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    Sanchia Alasia Head of Equality, Diversity and Inclusion, London Southbank University

    Read profile

    Jenny Sherrard National Head of Equality and Participation, University and College Union

    Read profile


    10:20 - 11:00
    Panel Discussion: Student Recruitment, Retention and Attainment

     
    • Widening participation in HE
    • Attracting and engaging students from underrepresented groups
    • Improving student engagement and belonging
    • Inclusive and Innovative teaching practices
    • Practical steps to tackle attainment and awarding gaps
    • Improving access and participation to postgraduate research study
    • Improving career advice and support to employment
    • Using student feedback to improve the student experience
    • Understanding why students leave and how to improve retainment
    10:50 - 11:00 Questions and Discussion

    Speakers

    Dr Gurnam Singh Associate Professor of Equity of Attainment (PT), Coventry University

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    Amy Norton Head of Equality, Diversity and Inclusion, Office for Students

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    11:00 - 11:10
    Intermission

     

    11:10 - 11:50
    Panel Discussion: Creating Inclusive Environments

     
    • Ensuring inclusive leadership
    • Embedding a whole-institution approach through cultural and systemic change
    • Designing inclusive support services
    • Establishing student networks
    • Developing accessible campus environments 
    11:40 - 11:50 Questions and Discussion

    Speakers

    Dr Sammy Li Adviser on Student EDI, University of Birmingham and Convener, LGBT+ Network of Networks in Higher Education

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    Professor Geoff Layer Vice-Chancellor, University of Wolverhampton and Chair, Disabled Student Support Leadership Group

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    Professor Parveen Yaqoob Deputy Vice Chancellor & Pro-Vice-Chancellor, University of Reading and Chair, Athena Swan Governance Committee

    Read profile


    11:50 - 12:30
    Panel Discussion: Protecting Staff and Students from Discrimination, Harassment and Bullying

     
    • Gaining commitment from senior leadership and ensuring an institution-wide approach to tackle discrimination, harassment and bullying 
    • Communicating acceptable and unacceptable behaviours for offline and online behaviour to students and staff, as well as sanctions for breaches
    • Navigating the tensions between protection from harm and freedom of expression
    • Improving student and staff awareness of harassment and sexual misconduct
    • Creating a safe environment for staff and students 
    • Enabling an effective response through disclosure, reporting and support processes
    • Dealing with crisis incidents in the digital age and managing your reputation 
    12:20 - 12:30 Questions and Discussion

    Speakers

    Dr Carrie-Anne Myers Project Lead, Violence at University Pilot Project 2021, City, University of London

    Read profile

    Khadija Mohammed Senior Lecturer, University of the West of Scotland and Chair, Tackling Racism on Campus Steering Group

    Read profile

    Fiona Waye Programme Lead, Inclusion Equality and Diversity, Universities UK

    Read profile


    12:30 - 12:40
    Chair's Closing Remarks

     

    Speakers

    Alison Johns Chief Executive, Advance HE

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    End

    Speakers

    Sanchia Alasia Head of Equality, Diversity and Inclusion, London Southbank University

    Read profile

    Alison Johns Chief Executive, Advance HE

    Read profile

    Professor Geoff Layer Vice-Chancellor, University of Wolverhampton and Chair, Disabled Student Support Leadership Group

    Read profile

    Dr Sammy Li Adviser on Student EDI, University of Birmingham and Convener, LGBT+ Network of Networks in Higher Education

    Read profile

    Khadija Mohammed Senior Lecturer, University of the West of Scotland and Chair, Tackling Racism on Campus Steering Group

    Read profile

    Dr Carrie-Anne Myers Project Lead, Violence at University Pilot Project 2021, City, University of London

    Read profile

    Amy Norton Head of Equality, Diversity and Inclusion, Office for Students

    Read profile

    Jiten Patel Managing Director, Diversync Limited and Formerly Head of Equality Diversity and Inclusion, The Open University

    Read profile

    Jenny Sherrard National Head of Equality and Participation, University and College Union

    Read profile

    Dr Gurnam Singh Associate Professor of Equity of Attainment (PT), Coventry University

    Read profile

    Fiona Waye Programme Lead, Inclusion Equality and Diversity, Universities UK

    Read profile

    Professor Parveen Yaqoob Deputy Vice Chancellor & Pro-Vice-Chancellor, University of Reading and Chair, Athena Swan Governance Committee

    Read profile


    Venue details

    Digital Event Broadcast Live


    Speakers
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