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New BME Researchers Group to launch at racial inequalities conference

Group of black people sitting in a circle

A new Black and Minority Ethnic Researchers (BME) Group has been made possible by the OU’s Rapid Response to COVID-19 scheme.

The Group, which will launch on Thursday 28 January 2021, received £5,000 to discuss research and scholarship around ‘race’, ethnicity, coloniality and decolonisation through a seminar series and conference.

The launch event: Dismantling Racial Inequalities in Higher Education, will be opened by Baroness Valerie Amos (Master, University College, University of Oxford) and will be the first formal event to welcome the OU’s new Dean of EDI, Professor Marcia Wilson.

The event will be chaired by Dr Jenny Douglas, Senior Lecturer in Health Promotion and Chair of the BME Researchers Group. The launch is an opportunity to raise awareness of the broader cultural perspectives at the core of the disparity for BME communities and explore cases of best practice in the higher education sector.

Dr Douglas said:

“Black, Asian and minority ethnic communities have been disproportionately affected by COVID-19. In addition, COVID-19 and Black Lives Matter have shone a light on existing racial inequalities in higher education. These initiatives will help build capacity among BME researchers and academics.”

Further events in the series are being planned and will provide an opportunity for BME academics to come together in a series of seminars and a conference which will focus on a number of key areas of research and scholarship - race, ethnicity, coloniality and decolonisation.

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