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Equality, Diversity & Inclusion


Latest update

Thank you to those who shared their views and experiences as part of the Being LGBTQ+ in Cambridge review. There were 1,027 survey responses and 150 people attended either a focus group or one to one session. The information collected is now being analysed and will inform recommendations for how the University can further champion and improve LGBTQ+ inclusion within its community. A summary report and details about next steps are expected to be shared between February and April this year. 

11 January 2024

Please note: The title of this page has been updated following feedback.


1. Background

The University recognises that it must continuously explore and better understand the experiences of its LGBTQ+ community. The University acknowledges previous significant contributions in this area, notably the Out at Cambridge report produced by the lgbtQ+@cam programme in October 2019. The time is now right for an updated exploration of the lived experiences of the LGBTQ+ staff community, and so the University is commissioning an independent review, to take place in the academic year 2023-24 and to be delivered in consultation with the LGBTQ+ Network.

The findings and recommendations from this review will be reported to the Equality, Diversity & Inclusion Committee and the Human Resources Committee.


2. Key objectives

The review will produce a report to be presented to both the EDI and HR Committees, setting out recommendations for how the University can further champion and improve LGBTQ+ inclusion, with due consideration of matters of intersectionality, and including criteria to assess and determine its success.

It is envisaged that, subsequently, the outcomes of the Review will form the basis of a future plan, which will, in turn, inform an overarching EDI Vision for the University.


3. Methodology and oversight

To deliver these outputs, the review will consult widely among the LGBTQ+ staff community. It will also consult with non-LGBTQ+ employees to enable the whole University community to make a meaningful contribution to LGBTQ+ inclusion at the University.

The review will include one-to-one meetings, focus groups and a University-wide survey. We will engage the Collegiate University although it needs to be noted that we have no jurisdiction over colleges and their participation in the Review is optional.

The review is being conducted by Dr Maggie Semple OBE who has been a member of several high-profile UK Government and European Union task groups and represented the UK in Greece and Hong Kong. From 1997-2001 Maggie was Director of the Learning Experience at the Millennium Dome and from 2001-2008, a Civil Service Commissioner responsible for upholding the values of appointment on merit. Between 2017-2022 she was a member of the King’s Counsel Selection Panel. Maggie is an Honorary Bencher of Middle Temple, and a Fellow of the City and Guilds Institute. Maggie serves on a range of Boards. She is a Non-Executive Director of Phoenix Holdings Group plc and, Jamaica National Bank UK Ltd. She is a member of the University of Cambridge HR Committee. In 2022 she undertook the University’s Equality, Diversity & Inclusion Review and the Cambridge University Libraries EDI consultation programme.

Maggie is supported on this review by independent researcher Cornelia Sheppard Dawson.

The project is sponsored by Professor Kamal Munir, Pro-Vice-Chancellor for Community and Engagement, directed by Andrea Hudson, Director of Human Resources, led by Ndunge Kivuitu, Head of Equality, Diversity and Inclusion and supported by Duncan Astle, Chair of the LGBTQ+ staff network and Steve Joy, Head of the Postdoc Academy.


4. How staff can share their views

All employees of the collegiate University are invited to share their views as part of this review. This includes focus groups, one-to-one sessions and a survey. It should be noted that we have no jurisdiction over colleges and their participation in the review is optional.


Focus groups and one-to-one sessions

A series of focus groups and one-to-one sessions will be held in-person during October and November 2023, which aim to provide in-depth insights. They are open to both those identifying themselves as part of the LGBTQ+ community and those who do not. Participants are encouraged from the full cross-section of staff types, grades and areas of the collegiate University.

Staff that are comfortable with sharing their views in a group setting, which can be useful for creating an environment of engaging discussion, can choose to participate in a focus group. Staff that would like to share their views, but may not feel comfortable doing so in a group setting, may choose to participate in a one-to-one session.

Meetings will be held online and participants will need access to either a computer or a smartphone to take part. However, if these are not available please contact Maggie Semple to discuss alternative arrangements. Focus groups will be scheduled for no longer than 1.5 hours and one-to-one sessions will be scheduled for a mutually agreed duration.

If you are interested in taking part in a focus group or one-to-one session, please complete the short form (now closed) by the extended deadline of 3 November 2023.

Although we aim to engage as many people as possible, there are a limited number of focus groups and one-to-one sessions. As places are limited, they will be managed on a first come first served basis. All staff, however, will have the opportunity to participate in the survey (see below).



All employees of the collegiate University are invited to complete a survey about the experiences and support of LGBTQ+ staff at Cambridge. The extended closing date for completing the survey is 8 December 2023. Please note that whilst this review is an initiative of the academic University, college employees are welcome to contribute their views. The link to the survey is below:

  • Complete the survey (now closed)


5. Confidentiality

Data and insights will be gathered and collated independently from the University to enable staff to feel confident in providing their information and views. The University will only receive information in the form of an aggregated and anonymised report and will not receive any raw or identifiable data. All raw data will be deleted promptly on conclusion of the review.


6. Other feedback being gathered

Views will also be sought from a number of key stakeholders as part of the review, who will be contacted directly. These include:

  • LGBTQ+ Network (staff)
  • Heads of Schools and non- School Institutions
  • Secretaries of Schools
  • Leaders and Managers
  • Equality Champions (Race, Disability, Gender)
  • Chairs of staff networks (gender, race, disability, parents and carers),
  • EDI Committee
  • HR Committee
  • University EDI team
  • University trade unions


7. Updating your details on Employees Self Service

We are also encouraging all staff to update their information on Employee Self Service. We ask you to provide sensitive information, such as protected characteristics, because knowing the composition of our staff helps the University to plan and invest in the required support and enables us to address under-representation in particular roles. You can do this by following the steps below:

  1. Log in to Employee self Service  
  2. Click on “View profile”. 
  3. Check your contact information and emergency contacts and update as needed. 
  4. Under the heading “Confidential information” click on “Sensitive information” and update as needed.