This is a message from Simon Lucas (head of school at EECS).

In October this year we will be marking Black History Month, an opportunity to celebrate the achievements, contributions and histories of Black people in the UK and around the world.

To mark Black History Month in the Faculty of Science & Engineering, we will be celebrating the work of historical and contemporary Black scientists, researchers and contributors through a ‘People Profile Series’.

We hope this will help highlight the important contributions of Black researchers working across STEM and in turn encourage us all to work on diversifying our curriculums to include more work by Black academics.

To help us explore the diverse contributions of Black researchers to science and engineering, we want your nominations of who you would like to see featured in this series.

Your nominations can be for historic or contemporary figures from both within and outside the Queen Mary community. Your nominations will then be collated and shared through various communication channels during October.

What you need to do:

To submit your nomination for inclusion in the People Profile Series, you will need to send the following information to Sophie McLachlan, Faculty Communications Manager (Science and Engineering) by Monday 5th October:

  • The name of your nominee, who they are and a summary of their contributions to science and engineering (e.g. what area of STEM they have contributed to and how, what impact have they had etc.)
  • A photo of them and a link to a webpage for further information if possible
  • Why you are nominating them, what do they mean and/or represent to you?
  • Your own name and School

If you are considering nominating someone who works at Queen Mary, please ensure you ask their permission before nominating them.

I personally will be nominating Magda Osman, from SBCS.

Magda had made some outstanding research contributions to decision-making and behavioural interventions, and works closely with different groups in EECS (RIM and CogSci). She is also seconded for 50% of her time to the Government’s Dept of Business and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) where she is currently influencing senior decision makers in the Office for Product Safety and Standards (OPSS).

Thank you to Norman Fenton for this nomination.

If a Black researcher within your field (or another field within STEM) does not immediately spring to mind, I would ask you to reflect on why this might be the case and take the time to do some research on the work of Black academics in your area. I hope this project will help us all learn more about the important contributions of Black people to science, and ensure we do better going forward to platform and highlight their work within our curriculums and our own research.

I look forward to reading your nominations.

Black History Month in the context of Black Lives Matter

While marking this celebratory month, it is also important to remember the broader context of racial inequalities and anti-Blackness around the world and across the UK. The events earlier this year following the death of George Floyd and the Black Lives Matter movement brought this context and the urgency of tackling all forms of individual, structural and institutional racism into sharp focus.

Educating ourselves and others is an incredibly important first step in tackling racism, so I urge you to all to take the time to begin this work: you can find a range of educational resources here.

Our work in EECS

As a School, we will be working with the University to contribute to the new Race Equality Action Group and the production of a race equality strategy. You can find out more about this here.

If you want to get involved in Equality, Diversity & Inclusion (EDI) work in EECS or join our School EDI Committee, please get in touch with Laurissa Tokarchuk or Nikos Tzevelekos. You can also get involved with the Science & Engineering EDI Committee by contacting Daisy Crowfoot, the EDI Officer for S&E.

Black history month at QMUL