Women at Oxford 100 years on: from access to inclusion
Tuesday 10 November 2pm to 3.15pm
As a part of this year’s celebration of the Centenary of Women, this online event aims to foster University-wide understanding, debate and dialogue about progress to date, as well as on-going challenges and our future vision for gender equality at Oxford.
Register for this panel session and Q&A
100 years after women gained full membership as students and were first able to graduate, we revisit gender equality issues at the University of Oxford. Rebecca Surender, University Advocate for Equality and Diversity and a Pro-Vice-Chancellor moderates our panel Q&A to identify ongoing and new challenges and debate future priorities for gender equality.
In 2019, Oxford achieved gender equality in undergraduate student numbers for the first time. Saira Shaikh, heads the Academic Administration Division, which has been at the forefront of efforts to increase student access and participation. Nikita Ma, a PPE student at Trinity, was elected President of the Oxford University Student Union in June 2020. Active in campaigns on mental health and institutional racism, as well as efforts to address student attainment gaps, her insights as a young leader can inform a forward looking, inclusive vision of gender equality.
Despite gains in numbers, women students – and staff – remain under-represented in STEM subjects. Among our panellists is one of the country’s leading physicists, Dame Jocelyn Bell Burnell, who has been the ‘first’ women to take on key leadership roles in science, has decades of experience on addressing the barriers to women’s advancement in science. Matt Jarvis leads current efforts to promote equality and diversity in the Physics Department and MPLS Division, where he is Associate Head of People. His granular understanding of institutional efforts to promote gender equality also informs his role as Chair of the University Athena SWAN Working Group, which brings together practitioners and academics working on gender equality.
In 2016, the University appointed its first female Vice Chancellor and since then has progressed towards targets to increase the numbers of women in senior academic positions, and their representation in decision making. But there remain significant gender gaps to close, and a need to accelerate change. Sue Dopson, Deputy Dean of the Said Business School is engaged in work to transform organisational leadership and can offer insights into effective approaches to advancing women’s voice in leadership.