Department of Political Science



6 March 2020

An equal world is an enabled world. Happy International Women’s Day 2020! #EachforEqual

International Women's Day (IWD) (March 8) is a global day celebrating the social, economic, cultural, and political achievements of women. The day also marks a call to action for accelerating women's equality. The IWD 2020 campaign theme is drawn from a notion of 'Collective Individualism.’ We are all parts of a whole. Our individual actions, conversations, behaviours, and mindsets can have an impact on our larger society. Collectively, we can make change happen. Collectively, we can each help to create a gender equal world. 
Did you know that here at The Department of Political Science, 51% of our workforce are women? And amongst that 51%, many hold management and leadership positions such as Head of Department, Deputy Head of Department, Director of Research, and leaders of research cluster groups. 
Across the Department, work is ongoing to create an environment that promotes and strives for equality, opportunity, empowerment, inclusion, and diversity. The bi-annual women’s writing retreat allows for a collaborative and productive day and the upcoming media training and broadcast on-camera training specifically for our female academics will provide a space to gain confidence and knowledge when it comes to appearing in the public arena for interviews and debates. 
In February 2020, we were delighted to see the first published journal article which came from the women’s writing retreat. Dr Helen Brown Coverdale wrote on care ethics, treatment, and punishment for the Journal of Applied Philosophy and the full piece can be found here.
In the 2019-20 academic year, the department has set up its first Equality, Diversity and Inclusion (EDI) committee, to review departmental practices and devise plans for change. The committee includes a mix of staff from across the department, alongside student representatives who will also coordinate their own student committee. The first priority for the EDI committee is to prepare an 'Athena Swan' application for the department, to gain recognition for our efforts on gender equality. This involves reviewing a range of data about our student body, about women's careers in the department, and other relevant activities such as women’s visibility as speakers at our public events. The application will be an opportunity to celebrate some of our specific activities to support women’s careers, such as our women’s writing retreat. But it is also an important vehicle to review what we can do better, and to set targets for improvement. Members of the committee are excited to be embarking on this work, with the strong support of our head of Department Jennifer Hudson, and faculty Dean, Sasha Roseneil. The committee also looks forward to supporting various student initiatives, and to addressing broader EDI issues over time.
As part of celebrating International Women’s Day, UCL are running a series of special events which we would highly recommend attending. You can explore these here.
#IWD2020 #EachforEqual