Equality, Diversity, and Inclusion in MDS

The College Equality, Diversity, and Inclusion Committee have been working hard to improve the opportunities and support available for their colleagues across the College of Medical and Dental Sciences.

Equality, Diversity, and Inclusion (EDI) within the College of Medical and Dental Sciences

EDI in the College is overseen by the College EDI Committee, chaired by Dr Sarah Conner (s.j.conner@bham.ac.uk). You can see the structure of the committee on our org chart.

The College EDI team can be reached by email at mdsequality@contacts.bham.ac.uk, and there are also various local EDI Leads and staff network representatives.

As well as College, Institute, and Professional Services Leads for EDI, the College has a dedicated Outreach, Equality and Diversity Officer (Tom Syder, t.m.syder@bham.ac.uk).

Find out more about Athena SWAN and family friendly working in the College.


Equality, diversity, and inclusion in the College of Medical and Dental Sciences is led by College EDI Committee, chaired by Dr Sarah Conner, consisting of Institute EDI Leads, staff network representatives, and student and NHS representatives, and reporting into College Board.

Running in parallel to College EDI Committee is the Athena SWAN Self-Assessment Team, chaired by Professor Wiebke Arlt and consisting of staff and student volunteers with an interest in gender equality.

Reporting into College EDI Committee are the Student Equality Group and Race Equality Charter Working Group.

Key resources for staff

This section contains all the key resources that you need to help you reach your potential:

  • Academic Promotions - University guidance and timelines for academic staff applying for promotions.
  • Aditi Leadership Programme - This leadership programme is for those BAME staff members on a grade 6-8 who want to develop their leadership skills.
  • Birmingham Academic - Information about the Birmingham Academic scheme.
  • Birmingham Professional - The portal for all development opportunities for professional services staff.
  • Emerging Leaders Programme - For those that already contributing to leadership in the University and want to develop their leadership capabilities further.
  • Equality training - Information about the opportunities available, including the Aurora Leadership Programme for early career female academics.
  • Postdoctoral/ Early Researcher Career Development And Training (PERCAT) - Helping early career researchers develop and become more established.
  • Senior Leadership Programme - A bespoke programme designed for senior leaders and equivalents in professional services (Grade 10 or above) who may be about to take up a greater formal leadership and managerial role or who may already be in senior management roles and wish to refresh their leadership skills.

Female researchers may also want to look at the Academy of Medical Sciences SUSTAIN programme.

Frequently Asked Questions

Who is Athena SWAN for?

  • As an initiative to improve gender equality, Athena SWAN is designed to help all staff and students. This includes objectives as diverse as supporting more female staff to become involved with College committees, to increasing the number of male nursing students, to improving the uptake of partner and shared parental leave. Athena SWAN is also fully inclusive of trans and nonbinary staff and students.

What are my rights in the workplace relating to equality and diversity?

  • The UK Equality Act 2010 provides protection for staff from various backgrounds from discrimination, harassment, and unfair treatment in the workplace. The characteristics that are specifically mentioned in the Equality Act are known as “protected characteristics”, and these include sex, gender reassignment, and maternity/pregnancy. This means that the University has a legal obligation to ensure fair and equitable treatment for staff regardless of these characteristics. For further information, see Equality.

Where are the gender neutral toilets?

  • The Medical School gender neutral toilets are rooms ELG3, EG02B, and EF02B (all on different floors in the East Wing, at the end of the corridor to the right of reception). There is another gender neutral toilet on the first floor outside the Leonard Deacon Lecture Theatre.

  • The IBR West building gender neutral toilet is room NG32.

  • Gender neutral toilets are also available for staff and students in the Dental Hospital and the Queen Elizabeth Hospital Education Centre.

Where is the multifaith prayer room?

  • The Medical School multifaith prayer room is room CLG31 (in the basement near Med Cafe).

  • A multifaith prayer room is also available for staff and students in the Queen Elizabeth Hospital Education Centre.

What other support is available to me at the University?

  • If you have any specific queries relating to equality, diversity, and inclusion, you can contact the University Equality team, or your local Equality and Diversity Lead.

  • You may wish to join a staff network.

  • Formal support is provided through the Employee Advice, Listening and Support Service and the Harassment Advice Service (both part of Wellbeing Services in HR).

EDI Survey