Learn how UK and US institutions are working together to improve inclusivity in Stem – join us 2 July

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Multiple reports show that in both the UK and the US, LGBTQ+ individuals are underrepresented in science, technology, engineering and maths (Stem). A report by the Royal Society of Chemistry (RSC) further reveals the scope and scale of the problem, highlighting that 28% of LGBTQ+ scientists have recently considered leaving their jobs because of a hostile workplace or discrimination towards them.

Whilst many government and academic institutions are eager to create evidence-based retention policies, the lack of available and adequate data presents a barrier to designing evidence-based interventions to address the problem. There is clearly a ‘leaky pipeline’, but it is unclear when or where these leaks occur. Are talented LGBTQ+ researchers being lost at master’s level, or during and after PhDs? Or, are LGBTQ+ people simply not selecting Stem to begin with?

Gathering data on this topic is extremely sensitive and necessarily requires advanced social science engagement and high levels of subject trust. To address this issue, the RSC partnered with the UK’s Department for Science, Innovation and Technology, and the Science and Innovation Network in the US. The RSC’s decision to fund a one-of-a-kind intercontinental grant scheme brought together a wide array of fields across Stem and the social sciences to investigate attrition and retention of LGBTQ+ people within Stem in the UK and the US.

Join us for the first of two webinars dedicated to this topic. Part 1 of this two-part, interactive series is an hour-long session moderated by Kevin Coutinho and featuring insightful presentations (see project titles below) and a panel discussion with two winners of the RSC LGBT+ inclusion in Stem grant:

  • Ioana Latu – Somewhere over the rainbow: Investigating presence, perceptions, and engagement with LGBTQ+ inclusion symbols in Stem departments in the UK and US
  • Bryce Hughes – Centering LGBTQ+ perspectives in Stem career decision making

LGBTQ+ in Stem: Using data to foster inclusion – Part 2 will be broadcast live on July 18, for which you can Register Here.


Portrait headshot image of Ioana Latu

Ioana Latu

Ioana is a senior lecturer in experimental social psychology at Queen’s University Belfast, UK. She obtained her PhD in social psychology at Georgia State University, US in 2010. Before joining Queen’s in 2016, she was an assistant professor of psychology at Rutgers University, US and a fellow of the Swiss National Science Foundation at the University of Neuchâtel in Switzerland. Ioana’s research focuses on understanding and reducing intergroup biases, with a specific focus on gender biases in organisational and academic contexts. Her current research seeks to understand and improve attitudes towards equality initiatives, including gender and LGBTQ+ inclusion initiatives in the academic Stem field.


Portrait headshot image of Bryce Hughes

Bryce Hughes

Bryce is an associate professor in education at Montana State University, US. He earned his PhD in education from UCLA, his MA in student development administration from Seattle University, and his BS in general engineering from Gonzaga University, US. His work highlights the disproportionate rates at which LGBTQ+ students leave Stem fields. His recent NSF CAREER award focuses on understanding the experiences of LGBTQ+ students in Stem majors, investigating students’ social networks, degree completion rates, and science and engineering identity. His research has garnered recognition from the American Society for Engineering Education and the American Society for Engineering Management.


Portrait headshot image of Kevin Coutinho


Kevin Coutinho

Kevin is a UK equalities practitioner within higher education and the voluntary sector. He is an Independent Governor at Cardiff Metropolitan University, an adviser to the University of Galway, and an Athena SWAN and Race Equality Charter chair/panellist for Advance HE. Kevin also runs a consultancy, working with higher education institutions to increase inclusion and enhance equality practice. Kevin is the Chair of the Board of Trustees for Windsor Fellowship, a race equality and diversity charity that promotes education, citizenship and employability. He is a member of the council at the British Science Association and has been a member of the Diversity and Inclusion Committee of the Royal Society of Chemistry since 2018.

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This webinar has been developed in partnership with the Inclusion and Diversity team at the Royal Society of Chemistry.

The Inclusion and Diversity team drives and coordinates the strategy across all Royal Society of Chemistry activities to support a more inclusive and diverse chemical sciences community. Through research, advocacy and recognising success, we are working to make ‘chemistry for everyone’ a reality. Find out more about our work here.