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Diversity in Geoscience UK (DiG-UK): inaugural meeting and launch event

04 June 2018
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Event type:
Conference, Workshop
Organised by:
The Geological Society, Burlington House
Event status:

The International Association for Geoscience Diversity (IAGD) is a charitable organisation that promotes inclusive educational and research opportunities, and raises awareness on improving access and engagement in the geosciences for students and geoscience practitioners with disabilities. Recently established as an Associate Society of the Geological Society of London, the IAGD is now launching a dedicated UK chapter, to be known as Diversity in Geoscience UK (DiG-UK)

DiG-UK will expand the mission and vision of the IAGD while focusing specifically on the needs, values and resources in the UK. Within this context, this new chapter will undertake to broaden its responsibility beyond disability to cover wider aspects of diversity.

To mark the establishment of the chapter DiG-UK hosted an inaugural meeting / launch event at the Geological Society of London on Monday, 4 June 2018.  This event focused on networking and building a community through a series of interactive workshops, discussions and presentations. Participation was recieved from across the entire breadth of the geoscience community (i.e. inclusive of all GEES disciplines), and beyond. Participants were invited to informally share their experiences and practice.  

Videos of the Day

Schedule of the Day

10.00: Coffee and registration

10.30: Welcome and introduction (Nic Bilham, Christopher Atchison, Jacqueline Houghton and Alison Stokes)

11.15: Mental health interactive session (Cedric John)

12.45: Lunch

13.30: Open session

14.30: Coffee

15.00: Leadership and advocacy workshop (Christopher Atchison)

16.30: Plenary (DiG-UK team)

17.00: Wine reception

Topics featured in the open participant-led session included:

  • Supporting fieldwork using 3D virtual reality
  • Mobile technologies to support field-based learning
  • 'Diversity Dash': a game to support staff development
  • Embedding an inclusive curriculum
  • Barriers to diversity / training for geoscientists
  • Perspectives of professional bodies and employers


  • Christopher Atchison (University of Cincinnati and Executive Director of the International Association for Geoscience Diversity): Chris facilitated an interactive workshop focused around leadership and advocacy for supporting learners with disabilities.

  • Cedric John (Senior Lecturer in Earth Science at Imperial College and Chair of the Department of Earth Science and Engineering Mental Health Action Team): Cedric lead a session focused on mental health, to include some interactive discussion around mental health issues and fieldwork.

Convenor Contact

Alison Stokes

Plymouth University

Tel: 01752 584889

Jacqueline Houghton

Jacqueline Houghton