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Professor Athene Donald: Equality and Diversity Activities


Since 2007, when I took up the role of Director of of WiSETI, the University's Women in Science, Engineering and Technology Initiative, I have been extensively involved in diversity issues. Until October 2014 I continued in this role and from 2010-14 I was also the University's Gender Equality Champion and sat on the University's Council, and the Equality and Diversity Committee.

Outside the University I have served on the Royal Society's Equality and Diversity Advisory Network (EDAN) from 2009-13. I also serve on the ERC's Working Group on Gender Balance and the Diversity Steering Group for BEIS.

I was a previous chair of the Athena Forum from 2009-13.

I feature in the Royal Society's booklet Parent, Carer, Scientist about the many ways caring responsibilities can be combined with a scientific career.

Awards and Talks

I was awarded the L'Oreal UNESCO for Women in Science award for Europe for 2009 as described here . Further details on the 2009 laureates can be found here. I have served on both the UK Fellowship and International Laureate juries for the For Women in Science scheme, chairing the former in 2011-12.

I was a recipient of one of the UKRC's 2011 Women of Outstanding Achievement Awards ( Lifetime Achievement Award).

In 2013 I was one of the winners of the MRC Suffrage Science Awards.

I have given numerous talks around diversity issues. The text of a talk I gave on Gender and Science in Academia- Obstacles and Interventions to the Oesterreichische Forschungsgemeinschaft Day on Science and Gender in October 2010. A draft of this paper can be found here.

I am frequently asked to talk about gender in science at many different sorts of events. For instance a video of a talk I gave at the 2011 HowtheLightGetsIn Hay Philosophy Festival can be found here and a video of a talk I gave to WiSET at the University of Southampton for their Annual Campbell Lecture can be found here. I have recently talked in schools, university and Government meetings about the issues for women in science, and have taken part in a number of debates.

Many of my blogposts (at my various blogsites) deal with issues around diversity issues, particularly unconscious bias. A podcast with Uta Frith at the Nature website discusses this and related issues.


Last updated September 2016