Equality, diversity and wellbeing

Postgraduate Research at the University of Reading


The School of Agriculture, Policy and Development aims to create a supportive, fair and inclusive working environment for the benefit of all its staff, students and visitors.

Working and studying environments that support people to feel free to be themselves, whilst respecting others, and embrace diversity are more successful and innovative. We seek to enable all staff and students to fulfil their potential, and to foster a working environment that protects their physical and mental well-being.

We recognise that we cannot achieve our vision without benefiting from the talents of all. We also recognise that in all disciplines there are equality and inclusivity issues for people with certain protected characteristics under the Equality Act (race, disability, age, gender reassignment, marriage and civil partnership, gender, sexual orientation, religion/belief, carers, pregnancy and maternity), as well as unprotected characteristics (e.g. socio-economic class, obesity). Furthermore we realise that addressing unequal gender representation and real concerns over career development and progression in our academic disciplines are priorities.

The School has worked actively to improve wellbeing, equality and diversity. We promote flexible working and good working practices, mentoring and coaching, mandatory unconscious bias training for those involved in recruitment, extensive support for promotions, and professional behaviour.

For further information on Equality and Diversity in the school please contact John Hammond [j.p.hammond@reading.ac.uk] or Eleanor Fisher [e.fisher@reading.ac.uk].

Diversity and Inclusivity Committee

The School's mission is to provide a diverse community of staff and students, and to ensure that everyone is able to reach their full potential. We are committed to providing an inclusive environment that enables all staff and students to succeed independently of protected characteristics (Equality Act 2010). We are also dedicated to improving the working environment to safeguard physical and mental wellbeing. To help deliver this, the Schools Diversity and Inclusivity Committee meets once a term to action and shape the School's agenda on these topics. We have representatives from all groups of staff and students on the Committee. In order to provide strategic leadership on inclusivity and diversity issues, and to inform future priorities for action, the Committee is informed by data collection instruments used at the University (e.g. the annual student and staff surveys) and by reporting from all School committees. This informs our priorities for action, and ensures that these priorities are embedded in School policy and practice, and align with the University equality, diversity and wellbeing policies and objectives.


  • Head of School - Julian Park
  • School Director of Teaching and Learning - Becky Jerome
  • Senior Tutor - Nick Beard
  • Academic Staff Representative - Eleanor Fisher
  • Academic Staff Representative - Ian Givens
  • Researcher Representative - Deepa Senapathi
  • Researcher Representative - John Hammond (Chair)
  • Human Resource Representative - Arpana Parmar/ Ellie Sowten
  • Director of Graduate Institute of International Development, Agriculture and Economics - Sarah Cardey
  • Technical Staff Representative - Caroline Hadley
  • Administrative Representative - Bridget Green
  • Undergraduate Representative - Umaymah Ali
  • Postgraduate Representative - vacant

Terms of Reference

i) To interpret, operationalise and feedback on the University Diversity and Inclusion Plan within the school

ii) To monitor key Diversity and Inclusion data related to the School

iii) To guide and inform the Head of School and Senior Management Board in relation to Diversity and Inclusion within the School

iv) To consider and pursue accreditation via appropriate professional bodies

v) To ensure actions are completed in relation to the Diversity and Inclusion agenda

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