The Department of History is applying for the Athena SWAN Bronze
Departmental Award in 2016. We are committed to equality and development of
an inclusive culture promoting dignity and respect.
"The historians in the Department are very proud
to be working to enhance the working and learning
environment of the History Department, working together to
ensure that we create a culture of equality and respect so
that all staff and students feel included and have the
support and confidence to reach their potential.
Athena SWAN lead for the Department of History, I see at
first hand the commitment to improving gender equality that
underpins our Department’s ethos."
Self-Assessment Team Chair, Dr Matthew Grant
Athena SWAN Charter
Athena SWAN Charter
was established in 2005 to encourage and recognise commitment to advancing
the careers of women in science, technology, engineering, mathematics and
medicine (STEMM) employment in higher education and research.
The University of Essex was awarded the Athena SWAN Institutional Bronze
Award in November 2013 in recognition of its continuing work to support
women in STEMM. The Department of History is applying for an Athena SWAN
Bronze Departmental Award in November 2016.
In May 2015, the charter was expanded to recognise work undertaken in
arts, humanities, social sciences, business and law (AHSSBL), and in
professional and support roles, and for trans staff and students. The
charter now recognises work undertaken to address gender equality more
broadly, not just barriers to progression that affect women.
Celebrating women in the department
Our department has 21
academic members of staff, 9 of whom are women. We also have about 30
research students, 50% of whom are women.
We're proud of our outstanding female historians. We'd like to celebrate
them by showcasing some of the recent activities of five amazing women at
different stages of their careers, from PhD students to full Professors.
Professor Alison Rowlands
Professor in European History
Dr Alix Green has recently published History, Police and Public Purpose:
Historians and Historical Thinking in Government (Palgrave, 2016).
Dr Lisa Smith
Lecturer in Digital History
Alice Violett and Nicolle Watkins
Graduate Teaching Assistants
Celebrating the history of gender
Researching and teaching gender history is a central
part of what we do here in the History Department. We’d
like to showcase some of the wonderful modules we run
that interrogate the way concepts of gender structured
the lives of ordinary people and reveal how women and
men lived their lives throughout history.
Resources for all working in the Department of History
Our department fosters an inclusive research and teaching environment.
For all staff
Essex Women's Network
Essex Women's Network
provides support, informal mentoring and networking opportunities to women of
all career levels. Although an initiative by women for women, all staff and PhD
students are welcome to participate in activities.
The Department has a mentoring policy to support its academic staff. A senior
member of staff is assigned as a mentor or probationary supervisor to all new
For research active staff, the mentor provides advice on what is worth doing
and when, where and how to network, how to develop a career plan, explaining
promotion criteria and how to develop a profile within a discipline. The
academic staffing officer can also advise on issues related to probation and
For new staff, an induction event
is held by HR and the department.
Health and well-being
Occupational Health team
offer a wide range of resources to promote good health and wellbeing, from
general advice on health risk to accessing eyesight tests and counselling
Staff may access a free and confidential counselling and support service
through the University’s Employee Assistance Programme (EAP) with Validium, a
professional and independent employee assistance provider who support over 350
organisations in the UK. This service supports the University's
Management Policy (.doc).
Harrassment and bullying
Essex is a friendly and welcoming community for students, staff and visitors
where people are treated with dignity and respect. We have a multicultural and
diverse international community and are committed to establishing an environment
that is free from any form of harassment and bullying. If you're unfortunate and
experience any behaviour which is unwelcome, inappropriate, intimidating or
offensive, our University has a network of trained harassment advisers who are
ready to help. This is a confidential service.
For information and advice or to arrange a meeting in confidence, call the
on ext 4334, weekdays from 9am-5pm. You can also email
Sports and exercise
The University’s Sports Centre
provides a wide variety of sports activities, relaxation courses, as well as
courses offered exclusively to staff, on Colchester campus. These are great
opportunities for recreational activities together with friends or colleagues,
during lunch hours or after work.
Equality and diversity
The University’s Equality and
provide advice and support on issues relating to equality, diversity, disability
The department’s Athena SWAN team promotes and monitors issues related to
gender equality and performance among staff and students.
For staff with families
Parents' Support Network
The University has a lively
Parents' Support Network
to support staff with families via a peer mentoring scheme, a returning carers
fund, educational talks and other networking events. There are also special
parents-to-be seminars. This is part of the University’s
support for working parents
package. The Department is supportive of staff with caring responsibilities and
encourages working parents and parents to-be to take advantage of these useful
The Department actively promotes a family-friendly working environment for
staff, implementing a range of policies to support working parents and
parents-to-be. These include flexible working, compressed hours, childcare
vouchers, flexible benefits, family leave and maternity keeping-in-touch days.
Further information on these opportunities, as well as information for pregnant
students and staff and their managers can be found on the
Human Resources policies page.
Our University has an
on-site nursery which offers exceptional day care to children from three
months to five years.
(Children's Holidays at the University of Essex Multi-activity Sports) offers a
holiday activity camp for children, aged from eight to fourteen, on-site at our
The University operates the flexible benefits and
schemes to support working parents with the costs of childcare. Essex County
Council provides further support for finding quality childcare in the Essex
Career and professional development
The University’s Learning and
Development provides training and development opportunities for staff at all
stages of their careers. They offer workshops and short courses in
management, bespoke programmes for
and postgraduates as well as
professional qualifications. Learning and Development also run the
Springboard Programme, an award-winning development course for women.
Our Athena SWAN team
Catherine Crawford, Senior Lecturer
Amanda Flather, Lecturer
- Dr Mark
R Frost, Senior Lecturer
Matthew Grant (Chair of SAT), Athena SWAN lead, Reader in History
- Dr Alix
- Dr Laila Haidarali, Lecturer
Professor Edward Higgs, Head of Department
Andrew Priest, Senior Lecturer
Nadine Rossol, Senior Lecturer
Professor Alison Rowlands, Professor
Shields, Department Manager
Violett, PGR Student
Watkins, PGR Student