The Race Equality Charter (REC) aims to improve the representation, progression and success of minority ethnic staff and students within higher education. It provides a framework through which institutions work to self-reflect on institutional and cultural barriers standing in the way of minority ethnic staff and students. Institutions working on the REC develop initiatives and solutions for action, and can apply for a Bronze or Silver RECM award, depending on their level of progress.
Below you will find information on:
- Guiding Principles.
- The University's REC Submission (2017).
- Self-Assessment Team (SAT).
If you'd like to learn more about the University's work in this area and can't find what you need here, contact us and let us know.
The REC is underpinned by five fundamental guiding principles:
- Racial inequalities are a significant issue within higher education. Racial inequalities are not necessarily overt, isolated incidents. Racism is an everyday facet of UK society and racial inequalities manifest themselves in everyday situations, processes and behaviours.
- UK higher education cannot reach its full potential unless it can benefit from the talents of the whole population and until individuals from all ethnic backgrounds can benefit equally from the opportunities it affords.
- In developing solutions to racial inequalities, it is important that they are aimed at achieving long-term institutional culture change, avoiding a deficit model where solutions are aimed at changing the individual.
- Minority ethnic staff and students are not a homogenous group. People from different ethnic backgrounds have different experiences of and outcomes from/within higher education, and that complexity needs to be considered in analysing data and developing actions.
- All individuals have multiple identities, and the intersection of those different identities should be considered wherever possible.
The University made a submission to the REC in 2017, unfortunately we were not successful in securing this recognition. The awarding body, Advance HE, commended the honesty and clear commitment from senior leaders and management, the time and effort that has gone into the submission and Action Plan from the REC Self-Assessment Team (SAT) and many others involved, and how commissioning an independent report (through Runnymede, a leading independent race equality think tank) helped to inform and structure our action plan. Read more on the announcement of the University's REC submission and future plans here.
Below you can read about the work undertaken for the 2017 REC submission.
Self-Assessment Team (SAT)
The SAT was established in June 2015, and reported into the Equality and Diversity Committee (Chaired by the Provost, Chris Ennew).
The SAT was chaired by Pam Thomas, Professor and Pro-Vice Chancellor (for Research). The members of the SAT during the writing of the submission were:
- Safrina Ahmed - Undergraduate (Department of Sociology).
- Claire Algar - ED&I Officer (Wellbeing Support Services).
- Cindy Asokan - Undergraduate (Politics and International Studies).
- Anil Awesti - Widening Participation Officer (SROAS) / Researcher (School of Law).
- Mems Ayinla - Undergraduate (Politics and International Studies).
- Geetha Balakrishnan - Professorial Fellow (Department of Physics).
- Sandra Beaufoy - ED&I Manager (Wellbeing Support Services).
- Gurminder Bhambra - Professor and Research Director (Department of Sociology).
- Paul Blagburn - Head of Widening Participation / Assistant Director (Outreach) (SROAS).
- Nia Conteh - Undergraduate (Department of Modern Languages).
- Nigel de Noronha - Teaching Fellow (Department of Sociology).
- Sean Hand - Professor (Department of Modern Languages).
- Brian Karanja - Senior Business Analytics / Analyst Developer; (Strategic, Planning and Analytics Office).
- Sotaro Kita - Professor (Department of Psychology).
- Angela Last - Postdoctoral Researcher appointed to work on the submission for a 4 month period.
- Upamanyu Mukherjee - Professor (Department of English).
- Meleisa Ono-George - Director of Student Experience / Senior Teaching Fellow / Associate Professor (Department of History).
- Kate Pearson - Anglican chaplain, with a focus on multi-faith working (The Chaplaincy).
- Rebecca Quansah - Student Development Manager (Warwick Students' Union).
- Ros Roke - Director of Strategic Programme Delivery.
- Leon Sealey-Huggins - Senior Teaching Fellow (Global Sustainable Development).
- Sandy Sparks - Learning and Development Advisor, Research Active Staff (Organisational Development).
- Sharifah Sekalala - Assistant Professor (School of Law).
- Charikleia Tzanakou - Research Fellow (Politics and International Studies).
Applications for the REC are accepted in February and July each year. The University submitted to the REC in July 2017.
Seven meetings of the SAT were held in 2015, ten meetings were held in 2016, and eight in 2017.
In 2017, we ran a staff and student survey on the issue of race equality at Warwick. We had a response of 604 from staff and 420 (285 valid responses) from students. We were pleased with this response rate and want to thank colleagues for their input.
We were also keen to gather further qualitative evidence which can support or challenge what the numbers tell us. In order to do this, we appointed Runnymede to run a series of focus groups on our behalf to talk to staff and students about their experience of race equality at Warwick.
The final source of evidence we used as part of the application is the data we hold about our staff and students. Colleagues in the Human Resources Systems team and Strategic Planning & Analytics pulled the data together, and the SAT formed a sub-group to analyse the results.
Taken together, these 3 sources of data highlighted the following key points:
- Diversity tapers off as roles become more senior, for example there is a perception that there are no black professors at Warwick. This lack of staff diversity in senior staff has an impact on the status of BAME undergraduate students, with some students reporting feelings of isolation and lacking mentors.
- British born minority ethnic groups are not well represented at Warwick and the University could do more to engage local communities in order to recruit staff and students.
- Our analysis of the ethnic profile of our staff tells us that employment of white staff members has grown at a faster rate than the employment of (British) black, Asian, and Chinese staff.
- There appears to be a leaky pipeline in terms of progression of (British) minority ethnic staff from grades FA5 through to FA9.