ICIS (International Centre for Intercultural Studies) Seminar 2018-19
Monday 3rd December 2018, 5.30-.700 pm.
Venue: Room 604, UCL Institute of Education, 20 Bedford Way, London WC1H OAL
Convenor: Terri Kim (Reader in Comparative Higher Education, UEL; Honorary Senior Research Associate, ICIS/ EPS, UCL Institute of Education)
Beyond the “Ivory Towers” working towards greater equality
Fiona Ross and Nona McDuff
Uncovering the dark side of inequalities of our great public institutions like parliament, the health service and the entertainment industry has recently preoccupied discourse and media attention. Similar structural inequalities experienced by women and people from black and minority ethnic backgrounds (BME) is also under scrutiny in higher education. Universities pride themselves as being progressive and liberal institutions delivering a public good and therefore the exposure of inequalities, such as gaps in pay, promotion opportunities for people with protected characteristics and BME student attainment, challenges core beliefs. This seminar will discuss some of the conflicting narratives of university cultures, policies and practice as played out in evidence based “stories” illustrating inequalities for students, staff and governance. The stories will explore perspectives beyond the “ivory towers” of prestige and privilege. The first is based on the journey taken by a large modern post 1992 university that took an institution wide approach to addressing the gap in attainment between white and BME students. The second story draws from empirical evidence of the opportunities and realities of progression and success for women in higher education careers. Finally some questions will be asked about the governance of universities and the role of external drivers in accelerating greater equality for example levers used in the national assessment of research excellence.
Professor Fiona Ross CBE, BSc, PhD
Fiona Ross has a background in community health and social policy and has worked as a practitioner, teacher, research leader and senior manager over a 35 year career in higher education. She has worked at King’s College London, St George’s Hospital Medical School and the Leadership Foundation for Higher Education. Fiona has had senior management roles as executive Dean of the Faculty of Health, Social Care and Education at Kingston University and St George’s, University of London and corporate lead for equalities at Kingston University. Fiona has published widely on care of older people, public engagement in research, collaborative practice, leadership and equalities in health services and higher education and is currently doing NIHR funded research on the health care workforce and leadership. She is a member of REF2021 Equality and Diversity Advisory Panel and Chair of the Board of trustees at Princess Alice Hospice in Esher. She was awarded a CBE in the 2015 New Year’s Honours List. http://www.healthcare.ac.uk/staff/professor-fiona-ross-cbe/
Nona McDuff OBE, BA, MSc, PFHEA
Nona McDuff has a background in business and information technology and has worked as a practitioner, teacher and manager over a 20 year career in further and higher education.
Nona is a panel member on the Teaching Excellence Framework and the Chair of the Higher Education Race Action Group. Nona has contributed to a number of roundtable discussion on improving inclusion and has addressed the All Party Parliamentary Group for HE on the importance of systematic approaches to diversifying the academy. Nona was a member of the ministerial Social Mobility Advisory Group, a member of the London Higher Diversity in Leadership Steering Group and an Executive Board member of the Royal Borough of Kingston’s Race and Equalities Council. She was awarded an OBE in the 2017 Honours List for services to Higher Education.
At Kingston, Nona is the Director of Student Achievement and has driven the institutional approach to closing the gap between the proportion of White and BME students obtaining a 1st/2:1. She developed the Inclusive Curriculum Framework to ensure students have a relevant and accessible learning experience within and beyond the classroom. Nona is currently leading the Office for Students’ catalyst project to disseminate Kingston’s work on the gap and the Inclusive Curriculum Framework across 5 other UK higher education institutions.