An ongoing summary of key issues raised and actions taken by the Department.
|Issue raised||Action / Updates|
|Need to increase student awareness of the EDCC and, encourage focused student engagement and conversation with the EDCC and its aims.
||Department Education Team and Comms to work with student representatives to develop a platform for this on our website and social media. Content needs to focus directly on our Department, but should reflect the wider Imperial values and strategy, and include links to the most engaging resources. Could also be useful to help generate content for prospective students.|
|Academic staff workload update||George Constantinides will present his early findings at the next EEE Staff Meeting.|
|Widening Participation and Outreach - Imperial College Maths School
||We are well-represented on this project, and we are very keen to make sure we participate in outreach activity especially focused on Engineering. There should also be opportnities for our students to get involved in outreach.|
|Issue raised||Action / Updates|
|Recruitment of women academic staff||Department continues to ensure that women candidates are shortlisted, and in recent rounds two women have been selected but ultimately did not take up the offer. Identified need for more encouragement/targeted recruitment for women applicants, which may include more women on panels-based and in audiences for recruitment seminars etc.|
|Encouraging more women PhD applicants||A new PhD scholarship (The Maria Petrou Scholarship for Women) has been established and advertised, and there will be a mechanism to ensure we regularly review the scheme.|
|Widening Participation||We recognise the need to widen participation and focus on attracting more female students, students from disadvantaged and under-represented communities and the underpinning nature of mathematics in all we do. We are inviting Imperial representatives from the Imperial College London Mathematics School, a specialist school for sixth form students doing maths and further maths, to talk to the EDCC. Engagement with the scheme gives us the potential to recruit more widely and provides an opportunity for our outreach work to develop.|
|Integration / Opportunities for Postdoc staff
||The department recognises that Postdoc staff have fewer opportunities to integrate and gain teaching experience (compared with for example PhD students who can take on GTA roles). There is no shortage of posts available and postdocs will be included in the communication for these posts. It is very important to ensure that Postdoc staff are not overloaded by taking this on in addition to their research work, and that they are formally recognised for their work.|
|Fair pay||HoD will include regular reporting of College benchmarking across departments on pay to staff meetings.|
|Reporting of harassment and bullying||The relevant section of the Department Life website lists the available reporting routes at Imperial including the new confidential Report and Support tool, and confidential counselling. The Jan/Feb 21 staff newsletter included signposting on how to report incidents, and will include regular reminders.|
|Building security update||Some staff not aware of how to log a security report. Department Operations Manager to make sure staff understand/are updated with how to log incidents and what’s available to support them. Some staff feel insecure in this building because of the open access we have compared with some other College buildings. Action ongoing|
Working excessive hours update.Academic staff - "A lack of time to think."
|George Constantinides has just been appointed by the Dean of Engineering to look at academic workloads. New posts have been created in the Education team, and new member of Computer Support Team is working with them to improve Department processes / software. College systems/software is an ongoing problem reported with regard to efficiency. College SIMP working group could perhaps take up some of these issues. Action ongoing|
|Need to develop and communicate our sense of community and the department's unique values / culture||Through Away Day sessions and a Teams channel, all staff are invited to join the ongoing discussion about the kind of department to which we want to belong. The Department Life website and #EEECommunity page (which developed during the Spring lockdown in 2020) have been designed with the aim of reflecting these values and encouraging a sense of community. Two department newsletters “Stay Connected” – one for staff and one for students, now help share local news, and relevant notices and events.|
|Lack of recognition and appreciation for staff||A new reward and recognition scheme for staff, Celebrating Great Contibutions, has been put in place. Staff will be able to nominate colleagues — individuals and teams — twice a year. Find out more about the Celebrating Great Contibutions scheme.|
|Issue raised||Action / Updates|
Alumni engagement events
|Giordano Scarciotti ran a very successful research group alumni event for the Control and Power Group this year, and it was agreed that this is something that should be encouraged more widely. Action ongoing.
Recruitment of more women students
|Our latest undergraduate recruitment video includes a very high number of women students represented. Women also featured prominently in our social media This is Engineering campaign in 2019 and 2020|
|Career progression and development (from 2019 Staff Survey)||Opportunities for development and growth, and career progression, and fairness in career progression were identified as low across job families. HoD will try and get further comments relating to these scores to help us better understand the reasons for this. Progression for some groups e.g. PTO, is limited by job role rather than performance. HoD to discuss making the processes clearer at the next management meeting. Action ongoing|
|Signposting sources of health and wellbeing advice and support for staff (from 2019 Staff Survey)
||The Department Life pages aim to help direct staff and students to resources and contacts in the department and in College. We will check to see how effective the signposting is on our website, and Rob Bell will contact the counselling team to help increase visibilty in the building with posters etc.|
|Working excessive hours (from 2019 Staff Survey)||Working excessive hours was identified as a problem by the staff survey. Time-consuming systems (e.g. Banner/Talentlink) were identified as possible causes.|
|Security and access to the EEE Building (from 2019 Staff Survey)
||Staff reported feeling vulnerable working out of hours especially on their own on a floor. HoD to make sure all staff know how to log security reports. A security report is produced each week and sent to College Security so security staff can keep a watch on specific risks. Staff will be advised of this, and a security officer can be invited to do a presentation on this for staff. Action ongoing
|Reporting bad behaviour / crime / bullying / harassment (from 2019 Staff Survey)
||Staff reporting incidents feel that they are not kept well informed about what is happening during the process. Disciplinary processes in College are being revised and the Head of Department will be able to put forward these concerns.|
|Managing the expectations of existing and prospective PhD students
||We will speak to students to find out why they want to do a PhD so that expectations can be managed earlier on. In order to tackle the incorrect assumption that if you take a PhD you will become an academic, information about what a PhD is needs to be advertised, and the realities explained. A PhD Open Day taskforce to be led by ERV, will present to second and third year undergraduates, at an annual event.|
|Commmunication across the whole department about workplace culture and Athena SWAN actions and updates
||"Department life'' section for the department website, which includes the Athena SWAN action plan, and updates from the EDCC, committees and forums, feedback, and sources of advice and support.
|There are no women external examiners||Two woman external examiners have been appointed for two of the 5 MSc courses. For 2020-21 we recruited a new external examiner for UG EEE, a woman was approached, but was unable to take on the role due to other work pressures. The department will continue to seek potential women examiners.|
|Information sharing between EDCC Committee and students||EDCC will link up with student reps to share information/receive feedback. Student reps are invited to EDCC and member of EDCC attends undergraduate Student/Staff Committee.
|EDCC membership / diversity||Three new women student committee members joined committee in first quarter of 2019 – this has helped the gender and staff/student balance on the committee.|
|Lack of awareness of unconscious bias in recruiting and day to day interactions with colleagues/students||Unconscious Bias training sessions for all staff scheduled for May 2019.|
|Issue raised||Action / Updates|
|Lack of formal, regular communication about the Athena work across the department
||Rob Bell (Athena SWAN Co-ordinator) spoke at the staff meeting about the importance of the Athena SWAN agenda.|
|Gender balance on the EDCC||Four new women members from different job families appointed|
|Accountability of EDCC staff members||Line managers have been informed of Committee members’ responsibilities re Athena SWAN and this has been discussed during PRDPs. Responsibilities will be monitored over the next year to make sure committments have been met.|
|PRDPs. Lack of clarity about the process - its purpose and its consequences.
||As part of an Equality, Diversity and Culture Committee action, a PRDP focus group has been set up to feedback on the process. It has reflected on what we can do within the department to make the process more effective/valuable. Ongoing.
|Staff Survey 2017. Results indicate that the department needs to create a culture in which staff feel more confident in raising concerns, without fearing the consequences||HoD has established meetings with groups of staff, to get a better insight into the work of individuals, and groups; to gather feedback and build relationships with people he might not meet on a day to day basis, and enable colleagues to feel more confident, recognised and valued. Two group meetings have now taken place and the remainder scheduled for 2019.|
|Religious practices not consistently considered in the organisation of social events, (although this has improved over the last two years).||All staff with responsibility for organising social events have been reminded of the need to consider religious dietary observances.|
|Academic recruitment, lack of diversity of applicants||The wording of job adverts/descriptions/specifications has been reviewed and amended. HR policies also added re: family friendly policies, so not to deter potential applicants.|