Project Details


Ask a typical eight-year-old to describe a scientist and they will likely repeat the stereotype of the lone genius: a middle-aged white man in a lab coat. We know that in fact the best research in science, technology, engineering and mathematics is produced by collaborative teams of diverse membership who each contribute different skills and perspectives. Nonetheless, the stereotypes remembered from childhood are sadly persistent and research shows they can influence important decisions, especially in recruitment. The vision of this proposal is to reimagine academic recruitment, providing alternative routes for academic research candidates to demonstrate their skills.

To embed real cultural change, it is necessary not just to tell people that they would be better off working with a more diverse team, but to show them. We propose to achieve this by implementing and directing a programme of "incubator" events - academic research workshops in which senior academics work alongside postgraduate students and other early-career academics, potentially with industrial partners, in an accessible and inclusive environment for a period of 3-5 days.

At the same time, we will conduct an interlinked programme of research into the experiences of early-career researchers in STEM subjects and the efficacy of alternative recruitment strategies in academia. This will enable the development and communication of evidence based policy to drive cultural change in science and technology higher education and more widely.
Effective start/end date23/12/1828/02/22


  • Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council


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