OWN newsletter

The OWN newsletter is published every two weeks during term time and once a month during vacation. It is a compilation of events, news and achievements relating to gender equality and women at Oxford.

OWN newsletter, Wednesday 7 February

If you have items that you would like to include in future issues, or to subscribe (Oxford email addresses only), please email: gender.equality@admin.ox.ac.uk.

Events and exhibitions

Masculinity, Migration and Service Work in Post-Reform China, Professor Susanne Choi, The Chinese University of Hong Kong

One in a series of weekly seminars organised by the International Gender Studies Centre on the theme of ‘Feminism and Pop Culture’. All welcome, no booking required.

Date: Thursday 8 February

Time: 2.00-3.30pm

Venue: Old Library, Lady Margaret Hall, Norham Gardens

Inspiring Women at Oxford Saïd: Your pathway to board level roles

Saïd Business School is pleased to welcome Claire Davenport, Celia Francis and Ariane Gorin to deliver an interactive panel session as part of the new Inspiring Women at Oxford Saïd series. For those looking to reach a CxO position, this interactive panel session will cover how to make your way to Executive and Non-Executive Board level roles. As an interactive session there will be plenty of opportunities to ask questions and start discussions, helping you get the insights you need to continue your journey.

The seminar is free and open for anyone to attend but registration is essential.

Date: Thursday 8 February

Time: 5.30-7.00pm

Venue: Saïd Business School, Park End Street

Valuing Women with Disabilities: Infantilised, Medicalised, Pauperised?

This seminar asks has the feminist movement and its scholarship too often forgotten disabled women? How do we ensure scholarship, across the humanities and social sciences, takes an intersectional approach to understanding multiple identities and experiences of women with disabilities from Black and Minority Ethnic (BME) communities? Dr Helen Brookman celebrates the work of Anna Gurney, a pioneering nineteenth-century scholar of Anglo-Saxon, who became a wheelchair user following an illness in childhood. Dr Brookman examines the impact Gurney's disability had on her scholarly praxis and considers the implications for writing the feminist history of scholarship. Julie Jaye Charles FRSA SARSM is Chief Executive and founder of Equalities National Council of Disabled People and Carers from BME communities. For 30 years, Julie has been deeply involved in developing BME community driven strategies directly on improving the well-being, representation and social inclusion of those communities. She will discuss her vision of working with government to recognise and abolish the multiple inequalities and social exclusion which form the many barriers that undermine the value of BME disabled people and carers. This event will be chaired by Dr Marie Tidball (Knowledge Exchange Fellow, TORCH). All welcome. Booking is essential.

Date: Monday 19 February

Time: 1.00-2.00pm (lunch available from 12.30pm)

Venue: Seminar Room, Radcliffe Humanities, Woodstock Road

7th annual OxFEST conference: STEMpower her – together we rise

Join OxFEST (Oxford Females in Engineering, Science and Technology) for a jam-packed day of insightful discussions, mentoring from experts, interactive workshops, interview practice and much, much more! For full details of the programme, information about financial aid and registration, see the conference webpage. Tickets cost £15.00 (includes breakfast, lunch and refreshments), early bird tickets at £10.00 available until Monday 5 February. This event is open to all.

Date: Saturday 24 February

Time: All-day event

Venue: St. Anne’s College, Woodstock Road

Enterprising Women talk and networking lunch

Be inspired to follow your passions, with Dr. Cecilia Muldoon, avid oenophile, physicist, classic car fanatic and amateur ballerina! Combining her Oxford DPhil in Atomic and Laser Physics and her experiences as president of the Oxford University Wine Circle, Cici went on to found VeriVin, an innovative startup developing a unique non-invasive wine analyser and working on the quantum-enhanced spectroscopic sensing of trace compounds in sealed containers.

Building on previous talks (by established and highly successful academic, Professor Dame Carol Robinson, and energetic and charismatic post-docs, Dr Denise Xifara, co-founder of Nupinion, and Elina Naydenova, co-founder of outstanding social enterprise Fairfull) Dr Cici Muldoon will be sharing lessons and insights gained on her journey from researcher to entrepreneur and CEO.

There will be a free networking lunch, from local social enterprises who combine making delicious food with doing good! Registration required.

Date: Tuesday 27 February

Time: 12.00-2.00pm

Venue: Audrey Wood Seminar Room, Clarendon Laboratory, Department of Physics, Parks Road

Dorothy Hodgkin Memorial Lecture: Fabulous fluorine

The position of fluorine in the periodic table confers unique properties that have been explored in many creative ways. Professor Veronique Gouverneur will discuss how fluorine chemistry has advanced medical imaging for diagnostic and pharmaceutical drug development. All welcome, registration is not required. The lecture will be followed by a reception. Organised by the Oxford Association for Women in Science and Engineering (AWiSE) and supported by Somerville College.

This event is part of Oxford International Women's Festival.

Date: Tuesday 6 March

Time: 5.00pm

Venue: Oxford University Museum of Natural History, Parks Road

Sappho to Suffrage: Women Who Dared

Pirates and poets, suffragettes and explorers - this exhibition celebrates the achievements of women who dared to do the unexpected. Sappho to Suffrage showcases some of the Bodleian's most remarkable and treasured items. Admission free. No booking required.

Date: Tuesday 6 March onwards (runs until February 2019)

Time: Monday to Saturday 10.00am-5.00pm, Sunday 11.00am-5.00pm

Venue: Treasury, Weston Library, Broad Street

International Women’s Day 2018: Women in the Workplace

With the World Economic Forum’s 2017 Global Gender Gap Report findings telling us that gender parity is over 200 years away – and with global activism for women’s equality fuelled by movements like #MeToo and #TimesUp – we have an opportunity to engage in a lively debate at Oxford. Join Kellogg College on International Women’s Day to hear from pioneering women who will talk about women in the workplace, sharing their own experiences and exploring what needs to be done to achieve equality across all industries, at all levels, and in all professions.

Baroness Hayter of Kentish Town is Shadow Deputy Leader of the House of Lords and shadow Brexit minister, she says “It is my experience that despite recent advances, the workplace has not changed much (or enough) over the last 40 years, and remains a challenging and unjust environment. We need to decide how to bring about this change.”

Mary Every was recruited by MI6 as an Intelligence Analyst at Bletchley Park during the Second World War, working on Japanese air codes in F Block. More than two thirds of the people who worked at Bletchley were women and they worked in every role from typist to top codebreakers.

This event is free and open to all. No booking is required. Further information can be found here.

Date: Thursday 8 March

Time: 5.30pm (refreshments from 5.00pm)

Venue: Mawby Room, Kellogg College, Banbury Road


Returning Carers Fund

The University’s Returning Carers Fund is a small-grants scheme to support women and men who have taken a break of at least six months for caring responsibilities to re-establish their research careers. The scheme is open to all members of academic and research staff employed by the University, including those holding joint appointments, but excluding those who have achieved full professorial title or who hold statutory chairs. Those currently on leave can apply for support on their return to work. The grants will pay for a range of activities, such as short-term administrative or research assistance, teaching buy-outs, conference attendance, visits of research collaborators and training in new research methods. The Hilary term call for applications is now open, with applications to be submitted by Friday 16 February.

For further information on how to apply, click here.

Vice Chancellor’s Diversity Awards

The Equality & Diversity Unit is delighted to announce the inaugural Vice Chancellor’s Diversity Awards, which take place on Tuesday 8 May. This is a chance to celebrate the work that’s happening across the University to promote equality and diversity and to inspire others. The Vice Chancellor will award prizes in four categories:

  • Individual Champion or Role Model (nominated by others);
  • Innovation in promoting E&D in the workplace or in the student body (self-nominated);
  • Promoting E&D through public and community engagement (self-nominated);
  • Promoting E&D in learning and teaching (self-nominated).

So if there’s someone who’s inspired you, or has championed a cause close to your heart, please nominate them for ‘Individual Champion or Role Model’. If you’re involved in any activity or initiative that has fostered or promoted greater equality or diversity in the University or your college, please consider nominating yourself for one of the categories, so you can tell others about the work, and share good practice. Nominations are open until Friday 23 February.

For further information and to download a nominations form click here.

L’Oréal-UNESCO For Women in Science UK & Ireland Fellowship Awards Programme

Over 19 years ago, L’Oréal and UNESCO founded the For Women in Science programme to promote and highlight the importance of ensuring greater participation of women in science. Each year, the International Programme recognises the achievements of exceptional female scientists and awards

them with fellowships to help further their research. In 2018, five awards of £15,000 each, will be offered to outstanding female post-doctoral researchers in the UK & Ireland. Adjudicated by a panel of eminent scientists, the fellowships can be used in any number of ways - from purchasing new equipment to paying for childcare costs - to enable women scientists to further their careers and facilitate world class research.

Apply online by Friday 16 February.

BFWG awards for doctoral students

Applications for British Federation of Women Graduates scholarships are now being sought. The awards are made to women doctoral students who will be in their third year (or part time equivalent) of PhD/DPhil studies in the autumn of 2018. Awards are one-off prizes varying in value from £1,000 to £6,000 and are given for overall outstanding academic excellence. For further details visit the BFWG website and look under ‘scholarships’ where more information including criteria for eligibility can be found. The closing date for applications is Friday 23 February.

Call for speakers: Soapbox Science

The University of Oxford, in conjunction with Oxford Brookes University, will be bringing Soapbox Science to Oxford for the third year running, an event aimed at inspiring more young women to enter STEM subjects, while also giving female scientists a platform to share their science with the public. Last year, Oxford was one of the few locations chosen to trial the new 'Art and Science' format. The event is arranged by Carlyn Samuel, (Department of Zoology), Dong Liu (Department of Materials) and Ravinder Kanda (Department of Biological and Medical Sciences, Oxford Brookes University).

The call for 2018 speakers is now open. Please do consider being one of our Soapbox Scientists, and encourage anyone you think would be interested in taking part to do so. You don't have to be based in Oxford, or be affiliated to the University.

Find out more, including how to apply, here. The call for speakers closes on Friday 23 February.

Articles and resources

Implicit bias in academia: A challenge to the meritocratic principle and to women's careers

This paper from the League of European Research Universities (LERU) looks at the role of implicit bias as a mechanism behind the gender gap and a potential threat to academic meritocracy. It focuses on implicit gender bias, examining how it plays a role in working conditions for women at universities, in recruitment and career advancement processes, and in research funding situations. Universities, it is argued, can and do take action to mitigate and eliminate gender bias in their organisations. Evidence for bias is reviewed, examples of action at LERU universities are given, and nine recommendations for universities and other organisations and policy makers are formulated.

Download the paper here

2017 Clarendon Lectures: Summary and recordings

The 2017 Clarendon Lectures in Management were delivered by Herminia Ibarra, Professor of Organisational Behaviour and Charles Handy Chair in Organisational Behaviour at London Business School. Two themes ran through all three lectures: the relationship between work and our sense of identity, and how this affects making transitions, either ‘sideways’ into different jobs or careers, or ‘upwards’ into leadership positions. The lecture topics were:

  • Selves at work? Identity and transition in professional careers
  • Leadership and Identity
  • Just be yourself? Image and identity in women's leadership advancement

A summary of the key themes and recordings of her lectures are available here.