Athena Swan

Athena Swan Silver Award

KMi are proud to be one of a handful of computer science units with Athena Swan silver awards. This award, received in 2022, recognises the positive impacts of our actions over the past five years to tackle gender iniquity head on, and motivates us to continue our journey. Some of the many highlights of KMi's gender equality work in the past five years have included:

  • An increased percentage of women among our students, our academic staff and our professional and support staff
  • Gender balance in our Promotions, our recruitment of PhD students, and our allocation of leadership roles within KMi

KMi's engagement with the Athena Swan charter has been an important opportunity for us to reflect on our practices and strengthen our commitment to equal opportunities for all, and to establish a shared vision aligned to the Athena Swan charter and embedded into our practices and procedures.

You can download an anonymised copy of our Silver Submission as a pdf here: KMi Athena Swan Silver Report and also see the status of our Athena Swan actions here: KMi Athena Swan Action Plan.

Reflections on the Silver Award

Advaith Photograph

"Our most compelling narratives are around how we achieved gender equality in promotions and how our research increasingly reflects our growing awareness of EDIA issues. Such achievements result from leadership and hard work by many across KMi over several years."

- Prof Advaith Siddharthan, Athena Swan Co-chair

"Congratulations to the SAT team. I am very much looking forward to working very closely with them and I offer them my unconditional support to implement our Silver action plan and guide KMi towards the next Athena Swan award."

- Professor Harith Alani, KMi Director

"This work has created a supportive culture in the department that promotes flexible working practices and fair career progression opportunities."

- Professor John Domingue, Outgoing Director

"Years ago, when we started looking critically at the data, achieving Athena Swan Silver seemed a far away reality. It however kick-started an incredible level of self reflection, awareness and commitment towards EDIA in the lab, bringing with it many positive actions and changes. There is still a long way to go but I am personally very proud and grateful for every single step."

- Professor Miriam Fernandez, Athena Swan Co-chair

"I was lucky to join KMi at a time when the Athena SAT was already an active, inspirational group for change. Members of the SAT worked consistently hard to improve processes and practices for real impact on gender-based equality. Achieving the Athena Swan Silver Award is a proud moment for KMi, showcasing our commitment to equality and documenting our plans for future change."

- Charlotte, KMi SAT member and EDIA Board Co-Chair

"KMi has always been an ethnically diverse research lab, where fairness was implicit. However, our Athena Swan action has truly transformed the culture and practice. For example, equality impact assessment is now embedded at the heart of our processes, and fairness and inclusion are explicitly everyone's concern. It's wonderful that we have achieved the Silver Award, and our lab members aim to lead the way by exemplifying best practice to others in the University and wider Communities, as we strive to achieve the gold standard."

- Jane Whild, KMi SAT member and EDIA Board Co-Chair

Meet the Athena Swan Team

Miriam Fernandez Photograph

Miriam Fernandez

Professor of Responsible AI Athena Swan Co-chair
Advaith Siddharthan (he/him) Photograph

Advaith Siddharthan (he/him)

Professor of Computer Science and Society Athena Swan Co-chair
Matteo Cancellieri Photograph

Matteo Cancellieri

Project Officer
Rachel Coignac-Smith Photograph

Rachel Coignac-Smith

Executive Team Assistant
Damian Dadswell Photograph

Damian Dadswell

Senior Manager STEM Technical Services (Digital Development Services)
Enrico Daga Photograph

Enrico Daga

Research Fellow
Anna DeLiddo Photograph

Anna DeLiddo

Professor of Human-Computer Interaction
Tracie Farrell Photograph

Tracie Farrell

Research Associate
Alba Morales-Tirado Photograph

Alba Morales-Tirado

Research Associate
Paul Mulholland Photograph

Paul Mulholland

Senior Research Fellow
David Pride Photograph

David Pride

Research Associate
Ortenz Rose Photograph

Ortenz Rose

KMi Senior Services Assistant
Aisling Third Photograph

Aisling Third

Research Fellow
Nirwan Sharma Photograph

Nirwan Sharma

Research Associate
Jane Whild Photograph

Jane Whild

KMi Administration Manager

Athena Swan Alumni

Charlotte Hamilton Photograph

Charlotte Hamilton

Research Manager
Agnese Chiatti Photograph

Agnese Chiatti

PhD Research Student
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Mr Antonello Meloni
Department of Mathematics and Computer Science, University of Cagliari, IT

Large Language Models for Scientific Question Answering: an Extensive Analysis of the SciQA Benchmark

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Knowledge Media Institute (KMi)
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The Knowledge Media Institute (KMi) is a distinct research unit within the Faculty of Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) at the Open University, Milton Keynes campus. The role...


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