UCL Great Ormond Street Institute of Child Health


Great Ormond Street Institute of Child Health


Focus groups

In parallel to the Steering Committee, we have a number of Focus Groups to address issues that GOS ICH staff and students have said are important.

The GOS ICH Focus Groups are here to address the issues that staff and students have said are important.  

They act as your voice recognising the differing needs of individuals and are committed to helping GOS ICH promote the value of different identities and create a culture that is respectful and inclusive, irrespective of age, disability, ethnicity, gender, sexual orientation and religion. The Focus Groups identify problems, propose relevant actions and monitor the effectiveness of these actions, liaising with the EDI Committee to influence organisational and cultural change across the Institute.

We would like all staff and students at GOS ICH to feel able to approach, join and influence these groups.


Comunity Focus Group 

Aims and Objectives:

  • Help create and support a sense of community at GOS ICH
  • Break down barriers to encourage collaboration across the Institute
  • Create both communal physical and virtual spaces to encourage social communication and activities

Contact: ICH.Community@ucl.ac.uk


Claire Smith (Focus Group Lead) – Lecturer III

Elizabeth Robinson – PhD student III

Kiran Seunarine – Research Associate DN


Data Focus Group

Aims and Objectives:

  • Collect and analyse data relevant to the EDI Initiative Identify which data types are required to monitor the overall goals of EDI
  • Locate existing data sources and arrange collection to achieve longitudinal datasets
  • Conduct staff and student surveys and other data-gathering exercise Analyse and interpret the data to identify trends, successes and areas for future improvement


Jenny Morgan (Focus Group Lead) - Professor DN

Jon Clayden – Lecturer DN

Andy Copp – Professor DBC

Timothy Edwards – Research Fellow DBC

Elaina Maldonado – Research Associate DN

Kiran Seunarine – Research Associate DN

Early Career Researcher Focus Group

Aims and Objectives:

  • Provide a safe and confidential platform where researchers can openly discuss, address and try to resolve issues including induction, employment rights, probation and promotion
  • Reach out to colleagues in GOS ICH Research programmes and groups to identify issues and problems pertinent to ECRs

Contact: ICH.EDI.Researchers@ucl.ac.uk


Athina Soragia Gkazi (Focus Group Lead) – Research Associate III

Amal Khanolkar – Research Associate PPP

Luis Miguel Lacerda – Research Associate DN

Sungano Chigorara 

Mentoring Focus Group

Aims and Objectives:

  • Promote awareness of mentorship and its benefits for career and personal development amongst all staff and students of GOS ICH Provide training where needed to all staff and students of GOS ICH so that they acquire appropriate skills and knowledge as mentees and/or mentors
  • Develop a mechanism and robust support structure by which all staff and students at GOS ICH are each able to establish and maintain positive mentorship relationships as mentees, mentors or both

Contact: ICH.Mentoring@ucl.ac.uk



Vania de Toledo (Focus Group Lead) – Manager III

Ludi Capelan – HR Manager

Julie Lanigan – Principal Research Fellow PPP

Conor McCann – Research Fellow DBC

Amber Vaitkute – PhD student III

Hemlata Varsani – Lab Manager

Parents and Carers Focus Group 

Aims and Objectives:

  • Support staff and students who have current or future caring responsibilities
  • Disseminate information about UCL policies and resources to parents and carers
  • Organise workshops, meetings, practical sessions and talks for parents and carers throughout the year Provide a maternity and paternity mentoring scheme to support new parents during the transition of both leaving and returning to work

Contact: edi-carers@ucl.ac.uk

Group Chair: Christine Thevanesan

Public Engagement Focus Group

 Aims and Objectives:

  • Making science more inclusive and accessible to a wider public audience
  • Encouraging more people to pursue scientific careers particularly those from underrepresented groups 
  • Support and encourage researchers to take part in public engagement projects, providing training, building confidence and recognising the importance of public engagement activities

Contact: ich.public.engagement@ucl.ac.uk


Hannah Mitchison (Focus Group Lead) – Professor GGM 

Claudiu Cozmescu – PhD student GGM

Gwyneth Davies – Clinical Lecturer III

Sam Ellis – Postdoctoral Research Fellow III

Sezgi Goksan – Postdoctoral Research Fellow DN 

Antonio Greco – Postdoctoral Research Fellow DN

Philippa Mills – Associate Professor GGM

Alice Piapi – Postdoctoral Research Fellow DN

Jen Suntharalingham – PhD student GGM

Students Focus Group

Aims and Objectives:

  • Create a welcoming environment for all students 
  • Support and enable them to develop into independent researchers
  • Support the work of the Institute in tackling bullying and harassmenet

Contact: ICH.EDI.Students@ucl.ac.uk


Ivan Doykov (Focus Group Co-lead) – PhD student GGM

Diana Rosenthal (Focus Group Co-lead) – PhD student PPP


Wellbeing Focus Group

Aims and Objectives:

  • Promote the physical and mental wellbeing of all staff and students through informative and interactive events
  • Provide a regular forum where staff and students can relax and take part in activities that will improve their wellbeing
  • Canvas opinion from staff and students on the type of events that would be of interest

Contact: ICH.EDI.Wellbeing@ucl.ac.uk


Kiran Seunarine (Focus Group Co-lead) - Research Associate DN

Ania Zylbersztejn (Focus Group Co-lead) – Research Associate PPP

Anne Anton – Administrator DBC

Ashwak Alshehri - PhD Student DBC

Ludi Capelan – HR Manager

Leysa Forrest - Research Assistant GGM

Caroline Fraser - Research Assistant and PhD Student PPP

Isabel Gregory - Postgraduate Student DN

Lynsey Hart - Research Nurse III

Farihah Malik - PhD Student PPP

Janet Nicholas – Administrator DN

Katie Payne - Project Manager, Research Hospital, Joint R&D Office for GOSH/ICH

Jade Turner - Administrator III

Jeanne Wolstencroft - PhD Student PPP