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Leadership programme

The Gender and Career Leadership programmes is the deliverable of action 3.4 of the TRIGGER, FP7-SCIENCE-IN-SOCIETE-2013-1 Framework programme (Actions promoting women’s leadership). The rationale of the Gender and Career Leadership programme comes from a series of interviews with colleagues in the Birkbeck School of Science and in Business, Economics and Informatics’ (BEI), with senior leaders in professional services and with academics, close cooperation within the college and review of other colleges’ leadership programmes (e.g. Royal Holloway) and internal surveys.

The purpose is to create a programme to enable female Birkbeck employees within the School of Sciences and School of Business, Economics and Informatics (BEI), to progress within their careers.

The overall aim of the programme is to enable close cooperation between all staff within Birkbeck School of Sciences and BEI School, and raise the quality of leadership in relation to gender equality in Birkbeck.

The action has been designed to target three main female audiences: “younger careers”, “aspiring professors and managers” and “newly and experienced professors” through the reach of different types of actions (workshops, networking events, access to information)in the Birkbeck School of Science and BEI School, where women are especially underrepresented (ref. Fig 1: representation of the target audience).

Professional services will be included in the programmes for the Junior Career and Aspiring professors/managers. It was realised after the survey to Birkbeck ASTREA (a grassroots organisation where women in professional service roles - as opposed to academic roles- can meet and network with other Birkbeck women, with a view to learn, develop and help to shift Birkbeck organisational culture) and meetings that Academics and Professional services had a need of some similar skills and information to succeed: Leadership skills, Networking skills and Self development.

Fig 1: Representation of the target audience

The programme will be delivered between June 2016 to December 2017 through networking events, workshops and access to career information as detailed in the action plan list attached hereafter (page 4).

For the “Junior Career” cohort, which includes professional services, academics and researchers, we will deliver two workshops in seminar style a networking event enabling the exchange of information between professional services and academics as well as a website on career progression (between M35-46). Such website exists already for the Birkbeck Students for their career and employability; it will be changed to meet the business perspective and launched to all staff within Birkbeck.

For the aspiring professors and managers, which will include professional services, academics and researchers, we will deliver two workshops in seminar style as well as  networking events enabling the exchange of information between professional services and academics on how to progress to the next steps The first event is taking place on the 28th June with a panel discussion on career progression (see details appendix 1). Furthermore, to  have more impact, female role models, (see detailed list in the action plan p.4) within the college will be filmed on their career progression. The first female role model filming has already taken place, Professor Hilary Downes, Professor of Geochemistry and President of the Mineralogical Society of Great Britain and Ireland. She was interviewed on 2nd June 2016. The overall purpose is to create a sustainable network within Birkbeck. This is also an action supported by the Athena SWAN Steering group.

Concerning the experienced professors, having met with several female professors and realising how few female professors exist within the School of science and school of BEI,  it was decided to create a University of London  Professor Network whose main purpose will be to help professors grow within their career and create impactful inter-establishment rapport. The goal is to have two events a year for the University of London female professors; the first one will be led by Birkbeck in November through a TRIGGER event. The following ones will be led by another Establishment.

Fig 2: Representation of the actions per audience

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