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Count Me In - a symposium on the collection and use of equality, diversity and inclusion data

Edinburgh, UK
Categories: Gender & Sexuality, Women's Studies, Science, Miscellaneous
Event Date: 2020-06-09 Abstract Due: 2020-01-24


The use of quantitative and qualitative data to diagnose and fix society’s equality, diversity and inclusion (EDI) challenges continues to grow. In the coming years, further research will inform the questions asked in the UK’s 2021 censuses; gender, ethnicity and disability pay gaps will continue to face scrutiny; and the Scottish Government’s formation of a Sex and Gender in Data Working Group and What Works? Gender Institute will elevate the role of data in evidence-based good practice.

To address these developments, a one-day symposium will take place at the University of Edinburgh on 9 June 2020. The symposium will bring together practitioners, researchers, analysts and policymakers to present new work/approaches on the ‘capture’ and use of EDI data. This includes data related to the UK Equality Act’s nine protected characteristics, as well as other measures and metrics related to EDI (for example, social class/socio-economic status, wellbeing and non-binary identities).

The day will include presentations from people working inside and outside of academic institutions, at any career level. The presentation of work that cuts across research and practice and multiple identity characteristics is particularly encouraged. Submissions can relate to any element of EDI data capture and its use but particular themes might include:

  • Objectivity in data – approaches that challenge what underpins statistics, algorithms and ‘big data’.
  • Social justice - data as a tool for activism and change.
  • Small numbers – their use a justification for inaction.
  • Gaps and absences – what is meant by a non-responses and how should this feature in analysis.
  • Time – approaches that account for how identities might change over time and ‘future proof’ collection methods.
  • Innovative methods – innovative approaches to sampling and data collection.
  • Qualitative data – ways to highlight the importance of perceptions and experiences.
  • Policy – the use of data to inform and justify policy
  • International – comparing approaches across different societies and cultures.


The symposium will consist of several panel sessions grouped according to themes. Although the structure of the day will be determined by submissions received, submissions should aim to be 20 minutes in total (inclusive of any questions and answers) and need not adhere to a standard paper format. We particularly encourage submissions that present insights into the capture and use of EDI data in an innovative format, as well as submissions that explore EDI data related to disability, religion and belief, and race and ethnicity.


We wish to encourage submissions from researchers and practitioners that may not normally choose to share their work at symposia or conferences. The committee also wish to encourage anyone who is questioning whether or not to submit to contact us by email to address any questions about the process.

Inclusivity statement:

The symposium will offer an accessible, supportive and safe space for all those in attendance. We believe in an inclusive approach to EDI data, where there is no conflict between data robustness and the valuing of all people’s identities. We therefore will not consider any work that targets marginalised groups or has the potential to enflame the oppression of marginalised groups, incites physical violence or the use of violent language, or calls into question the existence or value of particular communities.

How to submit:

Please download a submission form from www.countme2020.wordpress.com and email a completed version to countme2020@gmail.com by 6pm on 24 January 2020.

We will confirm whether or not your submission has been successful by 6 March 2020.



Kevin Guyan