INCLUDE+ explores how social and digital environments can be built, shaped and sustained to enable all people to thrive. The overarching aim of INCLUDE+ is to tackle socio-digital inequalities. Our programme of work, our values and our principles all understand socio-digital inequalities as lived and as structural, as social and as digital. Our central purpose firmly puts ED&I at the heart of everything we do.
For us, equality, diversity and inclusion need to be tackled at an infrastructural level and at a socio-cultural level. In considering this, we have spent the first months of this project researching and asking how to embed our values and principles into the very mechanisms (the infrastructures) of INCLUDE+. This relates to how decision making happens; how research is funded and supported; how and where we seek to grow (or consolidate) our network+; what we fund and support, and what methods we value.
This document comprises information about how we approach ED&I; how we implement ED&I good practice; our ED&I goals; and our measurements of success.
- IN+ PRINCIPALS: The application of our core values to our project management to ensure diversity and inclusivity in our decision-making practices and our activities, and to create an inclusive and diverse environment.
- IN+ PROCESS: The methods, tools, participatory practices and approaches we use through the research we fund and how we commission it in order to embed inclusivity and diversity into all activities and to implement our core values in all work.
- IN+ PRACTICES: The critical Processes related to reflection, consideration and iteration with our wider network and advisory group and through our programme of work, in order to ensure diversity and inclusion is embedded in the structures of our learning and knowledge environment.
IN+ VALUES AND PRINCIPLES
INCLUDE+ values all forms of expertise (professional and lived) and creates and develops equitable platforms for this to be shared. We adopt a holistic approach, understanding all issues as complex and multifaceted • seek out and support a diversity of perspectives and allow all voices to be heard •tackle social and digital inequalities, seeking to recognise and reparatively address them prior to, during and after engagement with INCLUDE+ and within it seek to address inequalities through inclusive and no-harm approaches, embracing digital technology where it adheres to these principles •enable people to live and work together as communities, supported by technologies that meet their needs • will continually work to listen, learn and remain open to criticism, taking a responsible and accountable approach.
Our principles underpin our research, community engagement, aims, vision and all participatory processes (labelled as IN+ PROCESS). IN+ PRINCIPALS includeREAD MORE ABOUT OUR IN+ PRINCIPLES
Our central goal with the IN+ PROCESS is to create case studies, blueprints, research and findings to support the implementation of ED&I at a structural and decision-making level. This will include key ED&I related questions; evidence of what worked and didn’t; suggestions and resources for the future. If we do not critically interrogate our own structures and mechanisms, we are in no position to advise or recommend for the future. Outputs from this programme of work will be published and widely circulated as blogs, reports, recommendations, case studies and podcasts.
MEASUREMENTS of SUCCESS
- Implementation of key findings and actions in subsequent cycles of work and decision-making programmes.
- Or Advisory Board reflecting diversity in relation to expertise and experience, with equal representation across the three sectors and according to gender, age and ethnic diversity, adhering to the principle that diversity makes better decisions fit for a wider stakeholder community.
- Iterative cycles of work informing other infrastructures.
Through our funded research we will value all forms of expertise (professional and lived) and seek to direct commissioned work outside Higher Education Institutions. We will establish inclusive practices of working with charities and the third sector in particular, ensuring our funding infrastructure embraces diversity, actively supports inclusivity and is as equitable as possible within the legal structures of grant management. We aim to support those who would not usually be able to secure research funds because of their precarity, positions or responsibilities and we recognize that, in order to enable this, we need to make the application and distribution of funds as open and inclusive as possible. This includes how people apply for funds, how they are able to receive funds, and how they report on funded activities.
Funded research also needs to be diverse and, in recognition of this, we embed collaboration into the heart of what we fund by insisting on research teams who are as representative as possible of the areas they are researching.
IN+ FELLOWSHIP PROGRAMME
Our fellowship programme funds individuals with up to £25k to undertake a fellowship at a different institution and within a different sector. It represents our investment in people and recognises the long-term benefit of diversity of experience and multiple perspectives. The fellowship programme vitalises investments in experience and process as important leverages for mobility and diversity. We aim to move people across different sectors and create structures to enable those who would otherwise be unable to undertake fellowships. In order to enable this, we also identify financial, structural or everyday barriers to uptake: our carers fund, hybrid modes of fellowships and mentorship of fellows are initial steps towards enabling participation.