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Women in Research: Making a Difference to the Wider World

Monday, March 8, 2021 - 12:30 to 13:30
OUBS Events

Deputy Vice-Chancellor Professor Josie Fraser will be joined by academics from The Open University (OU), for a thought-provoking discussion around the role of women in research and how women at the OU are making a difference with their research today.

International Women's Day logoAs an institution whose founding principles are built on social justice, The Open University’s research portfolio has a rich stream of women-led research projects and numerous projects that have, and are still having, a positive impact on women and society, both in the UK and internationally.

We will find out more about their research, how OU research is making a difference to society, and explore the importance of women-led research.

Watch the recording

Panel Members

Professor Josie Fraser, Deputy Vice-Chancellor

Professor Josie Fraser started her academic career as a neurobiologist with interests in animal behaviour and treatments for neurological and psychiatric disorders. Following research posts at the Medical Research Council, the University of Cambridge, and the University of Massachusetts Medical School, Josie re-joined The Open University in 2017 as Executive Dean in the Faculty of Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics, having previously been a tutor for the OU in the early 2000s, and since January 2019 as Deputy Vice-Chancellor. In her role as Deputy Vice-Chancellor she provides significant support in developing and delivering the University's academic strategy. She is a role model on the Leadership Foundation for Higher Education "Aurora" programme (developing women academics' leadership skills and aspiration).

Dr Jenny Douglas, Senior Lecture in Health Promotion, Faculty of Wellbeing, Education and Language Studies

Dr Jenny Douglas is passionate about the health and wellbeing of black women. Her research is both varied and wide-ranging, spanning 30 years, on issues of race, health, gender and ethnicity. The key theme unifying her research and activism is intersectionality – exploring how ‘race’, class and gender affect particular aspects of African-Caribbean women’s health.

Jenny’s interdisciplinary research approach brings together sociology, public health and women’s studies and she has published widely on public health, health promotion and black women’s health.

Dr Cinza Priola, Senior Lecturer in Organisation Studies, Faculty of Business and Law

Cinzia’s research interests and publications focus on the interconnections between work, organisation and society on issues concerning identities, inclusion, diversity, gender and sexuality. Her research has also explored how the concepts of brand and branding affect employees’ identification processes within organisations. Recent projects have included studies on the experiences of sexual minorities in social enterprises, women entrepreneurs, employee branding in the service sector and feminism in the academy. She is an associate editor of the journal Gender Work and Organization and regularly review for numerous journals. In addition, Cinzia is Faculty of Business and Law’s Chair for the Athena Swan charter.

Kate Lister, PFHEA, Faculty of Wellbeing, Education and Language Studies

Kate is a Lecturer in Education Studies at The Open University, specialising in accessibility and inclusive pedagogy. Her role involves leading on and championing accessibility and inclusive practice, training and supporting OU staff to be inclusive by design. She is a champion of disabled students’ needs at different echelons of the University.

With a background in educational technology, language learning and accessible and inclusive pedagogies in international contexts, Kate’s research interests include barriers to learning, mental health and wellbeing in learning, participatory research, student engagement and inclusive approaches in language. Kate is also an Associate for Advance HE, where she co-leads on the Mental Wellbeing in the Curriculum collaborative project.

Dr Miriam Fernandez, Senior Research Fellow at The Open University Knowledge Management Institute (KMI), Faculty of Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths

Before joining KMi, Miriam was research associate at Universidad Autonoma de Madrid, Spain and software engineer (internship) at Google Zurich, Switzerland. Her research is at the intersection of the Web Science and Semantic Web communities, where she has contributed with more than 100 peer-reviewed articles in various leading conferences and journals. She has extensive expertise in leading EU and national projects. Her latest research, which targets online hate and extremism was awarded best paper at WebSci 2018 and covered by WIRED in 2019. Dr Fernandez is the Athena SWAN champion for KMi, leading key initiatives to increase equality diversity in higher education.