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Stirling event celebrates women in business

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Carol Smillie

Stirling's celebration of International Women’s Day continues with an event celebrating women in business on Tuesday 10 March.

At ‘Generation W – Celebrating Women in Business’, a panel discussion will comprise Carol Smillie, TV personality and Diary Doll co-founder, Ann-Maree Morrison of Labels4Kids, Hinda Miller, co-inventor of the world’s first sports bra, and Rachel Gunn of The Butterscotch Bakery.

The quartet will share their experiences and address the challenges they face in business. The event has been organised by the University of Stirling Management School, in partnership with the Institute of Directors, Sporting Chance Initiative and OneStirling.

Following this, Jocelyn Bell Burnell - astronomist and campaigner for improved status for women in science - will deliver a keynote speech on Thursday 19 March, discussing the routes to success for women in academia. On the same platform, Professors Christine Maggs and Cathy Craig from Queen’s University Belfast will share how they achieved gold Athena SWAN standard in gender equality for their Schools.

Professor Sharon Bolton, the University of Stirling’s Dean of Equality and Diversity and Head of the Management School, will introduce both events.

Professor Bolton said: “As a University we firmly believe in equality for all, which is exemplified through our new OneStirling initiative, applicable across all of our activities. Our commitment to the Athena SWAN charter, to advance the careers of women in science, has been recognised with a national award. At the Management School, we strive to embed the principles of responsible management in our practice and pedagogy, such as equality and diversity in corporate management.

“We are delighted to welcome to our campus high profile, high flying figures in public life, business and the academy, whose successes and achievements span the local and global stage. These special events, tying in with International Women’s Day, serve to both spotlight achievement, and to encourage others on their own professional journeys.”

The two events follow on from last week's ‘Women in Politics: Reflections on the referendum and beyond’ event. Labour MP Anne McGuire, Councillor and Scottish Green Party co-convenor Maggie Chapman, the Electoral Reform Society’s Juliet Swann, Engender’s Emma Ritch, and Carolyn Leckie from Women for Independence led an interactive discussion on what difference the independence referendum made to women’s participation in Scottish political life, and how to overcome barriers to involvement in the public civic and political sphere.

The event was part of the annual ‘Women in Public Life’ lecture series held by the University’s Centre for Gender and Feminist Studies, co-hosted with the multi-institutional Centre on Constitutional Change.


Esther Hutcheson
Communications Officer
01786 466 640

Notes for editors
Background information

Notes to editors:

• The events are free and open to all, but places must be booked in advance:  (March 10) (March 19)

• Biographies for the participants can be found at: (March 10) (March 19)

• Images available on request.

• International Women’s Day 2015 takes place annually on 8 March, when thousands of events are held throughout the world to inspire women and celebrate achievements. A global web of rich and diverse local activity connects women from all around the world ranging from political rallies, business conferences, government activities and networking events through to local women's craft markets, theatrical performances, fashion parades and more.

Centre for Gender and Feminist Studies

The Centre for Gender and Feminist Studies is an inter-disciplinary research centre which brings together leading feminist and gender-focused scholars working in and across a range of disciplines at the University of Stirling. The Centre is home to MSc and MLitt programmes in Gender Studies (Applied) and runs a series of events throughout the year developing and showcasing feminist research at the University of Stirling.

University of Stirling Management School

Stirling Management School believes that management matters, and it supports a sustainable future for business and society. Students develop leadership skills vital for businesses and organisations across the world. With internationally recognised and accredited courses, Stirling Management School takes a very modern, career-focused approach to higher education delivery. Nine out of 10 of its graduates find relevant employment within six months of completing their degree, and the School has an extensive alumni network. In the Research Excellence Framework (REF) 2014 the School was ranked within the UK’s top 25 institutions (the top quarter) for Business and Management. Over 90 per cent of its research impact is rated either world-leading or internationally excellent.

Athena SWAN

Athena SWAN is a national charter developed by the Equality Challenge Unit, recognising and promoting good practice in advancing women's careers in STEMM academia (Science, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics and Medicine). Stirling has been part of the charter since 2011 and it was awarded the Athena SWAN Bronze award in 2013. This followed rigorous examination of equality and diversity information relating to its academic activities, and the creation of a robust action plan with clear accountability to promote gender equality. Several academic departments, including Psychology, are currently pursuing Athena SWAN awards.


The University of Stirling and the University of Stirling Students’ Union believes in equality for all. No one should be denied opportunities because of age, disability, gender, race, religion or belief, or sexual orientation. OneStirling is a new initiative which outlines the University’s commitment to equality and diversity in every area of its activity, and its aim is to ensure that students and staff are treated fairly at all times.

Centre on Constitutional Change

The Centre on Constitutional Change brings the best of UK social science to the debate about the UK’s evolving constitutional relationships. Through its own research, and in collaboration with partner organisations domestically and internationally, the centre will examine issues such as the ongoing ramifications of Scotland's independence referendum, the Smith Commission, English Votes for English Laws, suggestions of a federal or confederal future and dynamic of the UK's relationship with the EU.

Institute of Directors

The Institute of Directors (IoD) in Scotland exists to help, support, advise and set standards for directors. In Scotland the IoD operates from a base in Edinburgh and through a number of branches focussing on the Highlands & Islands, Tayside, Fife, Aberdeen, Edinburgh and Glasgow. A small team of professional staff led by Executive Director, David Watt, work with a team of volunteers headed up by Chairman, Ian McKay – a University of Stirling alumni - to deliver a range of activities, events and development opportunities all across Scotland. The IoD is strongly committed to increasing board diversity.

Sporting Chance Initiative

Sporting Chance Initiative (SCI) is the only business development organisation for sports innovation in Scotland, and is supported by the University of Stirling to foster innovation in sport. SCI helps Scottish businesses to develop new products and services for sports, physical activity and active leisure markets. It does this by providing up-to-date market information and facilitating knowledge transfer and innovation collaborations between businesses and Scotland’s universities and academic institutions. Over the last four years SCI has supported innovators and smaller businesses to improve sports equipment, develop new fitness aids, test new services, validate benefits, develop nutritional products, create digital apps and apply leading edge textiles and clothing design ideas to a range of sports.






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