ASME EDI Logo

Diversity and Inclusion Strategy

Aims & Objectives

This strategy aims to embed the principles of diversity and inclusivity throughout the ASME organisation, foster a culture that attracts and retains diverse talent and perspectives and maximises access and participation, both nationally and internationally.

The key objectives in this diversity and inclusivity strategy are to:

  • Anticipate the needs of people attending ASME events and conferences, ensuring ASME is accessible and individual to their requirements
  • Cultivate and promote an inclusive culture that maximises the talent, skills and diversity within ASME
  • Identify, attract and retain a pipeline of diverse individuals to ASME with a wealth of experience and talent
  • Promote and ensure transparent processes for the recruitment and selection of ASME directors and chairs of Special Interest Groups (SIGs), Career Groups and Committees are established and accessible for ASME members and external audiences to view
  • To promote high-quality research and scholarship in the field of diversity and inclusion

To view the ASME Equality, Diversity and Inclusivity policy please click HERE

To view our complaints policy and procedure please click HERE

Various definitions of diversity and inclusivity exist. Generally, any individual difference can be regarded as diversity; these can include the dimensions of race, gender and sexual orientation. Diversity acknowledges the range of ways an individual (or a group of individuals or an organisation) can identify. The terms diversity and inclusivity are not mutually exclusive; the principles of mutual respect, belonging, value for all and promoting multiple perspectives underpin both concepts.

While diversity acknowledges individual differences, inclusivity moves beyond this to considering how we engage with these differences. Inclusivity requires us to reflect upon the plurality of ways diversity can impact access, participation and experiences and works towards meeting the wide range of needs in a diverse population. The outcome of applying the principles of both diversity and inclusivity is to establish equity, meaning fairness (equal and full participation).

The Public Sector Equality Duty states that organisations must have due regard for the need to:

  • Eliminate unlawful discrimination, harassment, victimisation and other conduct prohibited by the Equality Act (2010)
  • Advance equality of opportunity between people who share a protected characteristic and those who do not
  • Foster good relations between people who share a protected characteristic and those who do not. These are sometimes referred to as the three aims or arms of the general equality duty. The Act explains that having due regard for advancing equality involves:
    • Removing or minimising disadvantages suffered by people due to their protected characteristics
    • Taking steps to meet the needs of people from protected groups where these are different from the needs of other people
    • Encouraging people from protected groups to participate in public life or in other activities where their participation is disproportionately low. Under the Equality Act (2010), there are nine protected characteristics:

EDI Disabilities Graphic

Graphic stating that not all disabilities are visible

All organisers of ASME events will aim to develop and utilise a checklist of quality indicators when considering venues for events and conferences. Once completed, a continual practice will be developed where these are publicised on the ASME website for members and external audiences to view. The Diversity and Inclusion Lead will work with the ASME events team to create a tailored checklist of quality indicators, see suggestions below.

  • Easy to reach by public transport
  • Accessible parking
  • Availability of portable hearing enhancement systems
  • Availability of multi-faith room
  • Appropriate access for those with physical disabilities e.g. ramp and elevator, particularly if the event is held on different floors
  • Availability of wide dietary options e.g. vegetarian, non-vegetarian, gluten free and alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages
  • Availability of roving microphones to maximise participation
  • Availability of private rooms for breast feeding
  • Accessible toilets
  • Availability/Assessing distance to the nearest childcare facilities to signpost attendees
  • Available technology facilities:
    • Free Wi-Fi for conference attendees
    • Facilities to live-stream plenary sessions
    • Projectors to include Twitter feeds and interactive software Slido, Kahoot and Menti-meter

finding a venue

  • Local patient involvement: Active effort to involve patient organisations in the locality of the event in panel discussions, stands, forum discussions and autobiographical presentations. Examples such as South Warwickshire NHS Trust Patient Forum and NHS England: Bite size – Involving patient and the public in event planning and delivery
  • Donation cups: Liaise with local patient organisations and third sector charities to offer the opportunity to include donation cups at our Annual Scholarship Meeting to support the local community
  • Local artist involvement: Active effort to invite local music bands and artists at ASM evening events and include this in the promotional material. An example that worked well at the ASM in Glasgow was inviting a music band and traditional Ceilidh dancing
  • Open invite to local sixth form students: Invite a small group of local sixth form students from one school, who are interested in studying medicine to the last day of the ASM conference (when attendance typically drops) to attend the plenary session and available workshops

The widening access proposal below is a suggestion for a structured widening access mentoring scheme to support undergraduate medical students and/or postgraduate medical trainees in developing their professional connections and networks. This scheme would provide on-going opportunities for individuals to engage in ASME and Wiley activities, increase their connection, gain advice and guidance about professional development and foster an opportunity to exchange and reverse mentor the ASME directors.

mentoring and professional development

Below is a suggestion of a structured scheme for considering how to attract diverse and unrepresented talent in senior ASME roles. It takes a holistic approach and considers all aspects of the employment lifecycle from advertising and recruitment, to interviewing and development support. To read our ASME Guide to Attracting and Supporting Diverse Talent please click here.

recruitment wheel

The ASME ENRICH Opportunities offers an exciting experience for a selected number of pupils in S5 or S6 in high school to attend the ASME Annual Scholarship Meeting (ASM), our flagship conference, for free. This national initiative is designed to actively support young people interested in developing their interests and insight into the field of medical and healthcare education.

Learn more