Outstanding ED&I Champion - Academic: Professor Helen Byrne
An award made to an academic member of staff who has shown outstanding dedication, sustained commitment, and effective leadership in advancing equality, diversity and inclusion.
Helen has contributed hugely to ED&I in the Mathematical Institute and at Divisional and University levels. At the departmental level, for 20 months from January 2019, Helen was Associate Head for Planning and Equality and Diversity, in which role she was also chair of the EDI Committee. As well as championing an increase in the EDI budget to support the Mirzakhani and Mathematrix student groups as well as childcare expenses for researchers to enable them to attend workshops and conferences, a major success during this period was her leadership of the Working Group in charge of the submission which led to their successful Athena Swan Silver Award renewal in 2021.
At the Divisional level, Helen was the MPLS Director of Equality and Diversity from 2016 to 2020, with a particular focus during that period on measures to support women researchers and improve the division's gender balance.
Finally, at the University level, as part of EPSRC's Inclusion Matters initiative, she was the lead Oxford investigator on a project with Oxford Brookes University to research women in spinout companies, looking at barriers, enablers, and support mechanisms in universities.
We are so delighted to award Helen in this category – thank you for everything you have done and continue to do!