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Race equality at BU

Watch our Race Charter video

Working together for change

BU became a member of the Race Equality Charter in 2016. It is an initiative managed by the Equality Challenge Unit (ECU) and aims to improve the representation, progression and success of minority ethnic staff and students within higher education.

Race equality principles

Our race equality principles are:

  1. Racial inequality is a major issue across HE
  2. People of all ethnicities to benefit equally from HE
  3. Long-term solutions to avoid a deficit approach
  4. De-homogenise people of colour from ‘BME’

The Race Equality Charter

Key points:

  • Managed by the Equality Challenge Unit.
  • BU became members in 2016.
  • Aims to improve the representation, progression and success of staff and students of colour within HE.
  • Currently, 48 universities are members.
  • Currently 10 institutions hold awards.
  • BU is applying for an award in 2019.

Our Engagement Plan

Key points:

  • Monthly news updates on our work.
  • BU2025 ‘Inclusivity’ Case Studies.
  • Fusion Case Studies.
  • Twice-yearly workshops for reflection and learning.
  • Annual Event to showcase our work, engage staff and students and the local community.

Our work supports the university's BU2025 vision and our core values of excellence, creativity, responsibility and, in particular, inclusivity. 

Case study: A Fusion of Education, Practice and Research for Social Change

In July 2017, Dr Deborah Gabriel from the Faculty of Media and Communication hosted a panel discussion event (see photo gallery below) involving graduates who took her final year undergraduate unit 'Media Inequality' (since renamed Race, Media and Inequality).

The key aims of the unit are to help students develop the cultural competencies to examine inequalities linked to race and representation in communications practice, and advance solutions for industry. The panellists included journalist, writer and broadcaster Afua Hirsch, Big Voice Communications CEO Catherine Grinyer, Shades of Noir Director Aisha Richards and BU Marketing Communications graduate Stacey Kelly-Maher.

Graduates Ray Taiwo and Naomi Oti-Sampson also contributed to the event. Dr Gabriel specialises in social justice pedagogy – teaching for social change, which is the focus of a research paper published in the Media Education Research Journal.

Case study criteria: Specific, strategic and targeted interventions, evidenced and linked to key areas of focus.

Our key areas of focus for black and Asian students and staff:

Student outcomes

  • Tackle the degree attainment gap
  • Improve progression to PG study
  • Improve employability.

Student experience

  • Improve student satisfaction.


  • Increase recruitment.


  • Address barriers to recruitment and progression
  • Improve support.