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Testing out a theory

Data Protection Update: May 2022

Must-do Training!

If you have not completed the University Data Protection training or refresher in the past two years. Please do so as soon as possible. Data Protection training for people handling personal data is a mandatory Information Commissioners Office requirement as well as a University requirement.

If you have any queries or would think your service may benefit from additional team or service question and answer sessions please contact us on dataprotection@kent.ac.uk

Personal Data Security Incident or Breach

Not every personal data incident security incident is a data breach and not every data breach is reportable to the Information Commissioner. But the University has a statutory duty to investigate, evaluate and record all incidents (whether reportable or not).

When reporting a data breach to the Information Commissioner’s Office the first or second question is always “have staff involved completed data protection training”?

The UKGDPR and DPA 2018 gives the Information Commissioner the power to issue penalties and instructions for lack of process. Lack of training will be considered lack of process leaving the University vulnerable to financial penalties, enforcement notices and bad publicity!

If in doubt seek advice and assistance from Information Compliance dataprotection@kent.ac.uk

All incidents are distressing to individuals affected by them so it is important that lessons are learned and  that all incidents are reported to Information Compliance. If incidents are not reported we cannot learn lessons or comply with the law.

First lesson in Data Incident Management if you can get it back – get it back – then contact us!

New Online Reporting Tool

Information Compliance have launched a new online reporting tool. This form provides all the information we need to evaluate any incident or breach. If you cannot access this form for any reason please e-mail Information Compliance on the e-mail above.

Incident Trends

Most information security incidents happen because of human error or lack of thought, this is true of all the incidents reported in the past quarter. Common mistakes include

  • e-mails sent to the wrong people
  • e-mails sent to a group rather than an individual (or wrong group).

Information Compliance  has reported 1 breach to the Information Commissioner’s Office in the past quarter and held discussions about a further two incidents which were very close to the statutory requirement to report (to the Commissioner’s Office)


Where you are working and who can see your work

Recently I travelled on the Euston to Crewe train I returned to my seat having walked through the corridor. I sat down and informed the man opposite me that he worked for the MoD! the person two seats down was a lecturer… etc! I could read their screens just moving through the carriage! I do not work on the train unless I have a privacy screen fitted (they are easily removeable when not needed and are very light).

For the cost of £30 (approx.) could save the University and Departments £000s’

How do you send information?

Is it secure? Who can see it?  Do you know the privacy settings. Is it appropriate use of acebook or teams for example?


University Laptops are encrypted. The reason for this  to prevent inappropriate access if laptops are lost or stolen. Organisations have been fined  tens of £000,000.00s’ for losing unencrypted laptops. Keeping log in details (such as encryption key and passwords) with the laptop negates encryption and leaves the UoK open to financial penalties. Please keep them separate!!

Don’t Keep Encryption Keys and passwords with your computer

Think what you do with other people’s data treat it at least as securely as your own!

  • Keep personal data secure
  • Don’t share your passwords
  • Beware of scams
  • Lock your computer even if you leave it for “only a couple of minutes”

BAME Staff Network – We want to hear from you!

Kent’s BAME Staff Network was launched in 2019 to support the University’s commitment to equality, diversity and inclusivity and provide an active forum in which BAME staff can engage to discuss issues and experiences important to them.

About the Network

Full Terms of Reference for the Network can be seen on the HR webpages:

Current Network Co-Chairs are Mita Mondal, Vanisha Jassal, Dr Bridget Ng’andu, Dr Barbara Adewumi and Dr Gurprit Lall; all have been staff members at Kent for several years. One of the Co-Chairs is studying for a PhD research degree at the University. They therefore bring a range of experience and knowledge related to both staff and students. This is critical to forming a comprehensive understanding of BAME experiences at the University. To find out about the people behind the Network, take a look at this blog produced by the Co-Chairs during the University’s virtual ‘Belong and Grow’ week in May 2020.

Following its launch in 2019, a key objective of the Network has been to reach out to all BAME staff members so please do contact the Network at bamestaffnetwork@kent.ac.uk if you would like to talk to the Co-Chairs about membership or any other matters.  Please note that this inbox is only accessible by the five Co-Chairs and all communication will be kept confidential and anonymous.

Staff survey Phase 2 Case Studies

In 2020, all staff at the University of Kent were invited to take part in the BAME Staff Network Survey Phase 1 to help the Network explore and examine staff experiences of working at Kent.  The BAME Staff Network All Staff Survey 2020: A report on the findings, is now available on the BAME Staff Network website – BAME Network – Equality, Diversity and Inclusivity – University of Kent. The Report was positively received and endorsed by Professor Georgina Randsley de Moura, Deputy Vice-Chancellor – Academic Strategy, Planning and Performance.

We are now building on the exclusive insight of Phase 1 of the qualitative research by progressing the research study to Phase 2, which involves rich in-depth Qualitative Interviews with colleagues that expressed interest in participating in the case studies.  To enable us to have a good representation of colleagues from BAME backgrounds, we requested for amendments to the initial Ethics Application of 2020, to include a specific request for BAME staff that did not take part in the Phase 1 research, but would like to participate in the case studies, to now do so. The amendment was approved by SSPSSR Ethics Committee in March/April 2022.

Our research in Phase 1 foregrounds the significance of colleagues wellbeing, progression and sense of belonging and we wish for BAME staff to deeply reflect on their lived experiences whilst working at Kent. This will enable the Network to continue its collaborative work with the University’s Senior Management Team in addressing racial inequalities and create an inclusive culture and environment where all staff are able to thrive, irrespective of their race or ethnicity.

Please remember, if you have any questions about the Phase 2 Case Study research, to email the Principal Researcher, Dr Bridget Ng’andu on B.Ng’andu@kent.ac.uk.

For expressions of interest to participate in the study, please contact Dr Daisy Emoekabu on d.a.emoekabu@kent.ac.uk

Thank you, Bridget, Mita, Gurprit, Barbara and Vanisha, Co-Chairs of the BAME Staff Network

Launch of Research at Kent Website

We are delighted to announce the official launch of the Research at Kent website, which is maximising discoverability of cutting-edge research and innovation projects from across the University of Kent.


Explore projects that are delivering significant social, cultural and economic benefits to regional, national and international communities. Find out about our world-leading researchers who are taking a collaborative, global, impactful and interdisciplinary approach to research and innovation.

How it works

Research at Kent provides a network of University of Kent branded websites, freely available to researchers across the University, to help promote their research projects.

It provides standard options to display text, images, video, and other media. It can also display customized lists of research works from Kent Academic Repository, course listings, course modules, and SharePoint lists.

Get your own project site

Any researcher from across the university can have a Research at Kent project site.

If you’re a postdoctoral researcher make sure to include the name of your supervisor for approval.

Get in touch

Contact Josie Caplehorne with any questions or comments about Research at Kent.

EDI Forum – 18 May 2022

The next EDI Forum is scheduled for the 18 May, 13.00 – 15.00  (online via Teams)

The EDI Forum exists to allow all students and members of staff at the University of Kent to come together to discuss topics related to equality, diversity and inclusion that are important to them. This could be raising issues that the University needs to address, highlighting good practice that they have come across or sharing their thoughts and ideas.

The Forum is a safe, neutral space that is chaired by a volunteer member of staff. It feeds any discussions back to the EDI Strategy Group so that real change can be manifested across the University.

Any member of staff or student can raise an item for discussion. If you have something that you wish to add to the agenda, please email Becky Lamyman, Student EDI Officer.

At the next meeting the main topic for discussion will be Menopause Support at Kent; what is available, what is missing, ideas for events and activities to raise awareness, how line managers and supervisors or tutors can be better positioned to support staff and students going through the menopause, what a Menopause Support Policy should include etc.

We particularly welcome members of the Staff and Student representative networks. Trade Union and Divisional / Directorate EDI representatives and student societies to attend.

You do not need to register in advance or book a place; simply follow the link on the day.

The agenda and minutes from previous meetings are available on the EDI Forum webpages

We look forward to welcoming you to the Forum on the 18 May at 13.00.


Career Celebration Conference for Professor Adrian Podoleanu

We are delighted to announce that on 26 and 27 May 2022 an event will take place to celebrate our colleague Professor Adrian Podoleanu’s distinguished career.

About Professor Podoleanu

Professor Podoleanu is a pioneering researcher who helped advance greatly the field of Optical Coherence Tomography (OCT). The University of Kent has benefited for many years from Adrian’s dedication and enthusiasm and the world-leading quality of his research and its application.

The conference will include speakers from across the Division of Natural Sciences including academic staff and current research students. There will be the opportunity to view our current laboratory spaces and to network with a swathe of high-calibre researchers.

Since 2005 Professor Podoleanu has led the Applied Optics Group in the University of Kent (and continues to do so), developing OCT both as a methodology and with applications across a wide range of fields from clinical practice to forensic sciences. He has supervised (and continues to do so) of more than 50 postgraduate and visiting researchers during his career at Kent, many of whom have gone on to lead in their fields.

As members of the Applied Optics Group, we look forward to welcoming in May a number of world leading researchers and also giving Adrian an opportunity to be reunited with many of his alumni who benefited not only from his undoubted research excellence but also from his leadership and training to go on and be high achievers in the field of Optical Coherence Tomography and Photonics in general.

Find out more about Professor Podoleanu and his career


Registration is open until Monday 23rd May

To register please navigate to


To register as a current member of staff or PG student (in possession of a KentOne card) and benefit from the discounted £25 conference fee, please ensure you check the appropriate option and fill in the 6-digit staff number on the back of your card when asked to do so. There is no need to input a discount code.

Former Kent staff can get a discount code by emailing George Dobre – this will enable you to progress through the registration screens.


Indie-rock legend Kristin Hersh comes to Gulbenkian Arts Centre (Sat 14 May)

Influential songwriter and multi-instrumentalist Kristin Hersh, leader of the indie rock band Throwing Muses and the noise rock power trio 50 Foot Wave, is back on the road with her highly acclaimed Throwing Muses release, Sun Racket.

Playing here in a solo capacity, this is a rare opportunity to spend an intimate evening alongside one of the world’s most uniquely gifted and compelling songwriters.

” Lean, Immersive, and groove-heavy, tapping the vein of hardscrabble psychedelia that defines their best work ” – Pitchfork

More information on this event and how to book can be found on the Gulbenkian website.

Corridor of servers

Digital by Default: Post Office Horizon System free event, 21 May

This event brings together ex-sub-postmasters and mistresses who were wrongfully convicted for theft and false accounting, legal and IT experts, and investigative journalists to think through some important issues raised by one of the largest miscarriages of justice.

Join us on Saturday 21 May, 1.30-17.30 at the Gulbenkian Theatre.

The event is centred on the lived experiences of people directly impacted. It provides an opportunity and space to reflect on what happened and what lessons can be gleaned. There will be a mix of stories, presentations and panel discussions, and a Q&A session with the audience.

We are pleased to be joined by Mrs Seema Misra (SPM), Mrs Nichola Arch (SPM), Mr Parmod Kalia (SPM), Mr Patrick Green QC and Ms Kathleen Donnelly (Henderson Chambers), Professor Lydia Hayes (Head of Kent Law School), Professor Richard Moorhead (University of Exeter), Professor Bernard Richmond QC (Kent Law School), Ms Flora Page (UCL), Professor Harold Thimbleby (Swansea University), Dr Ida Petretta (Kent Law School), Mr Ian Reeves (Head of the Centre of Journalism), Mr Karl Flinders (Computer Weekly), Ms Katie Glass (Telegraph), and Mr David Chaplin and Ms Helen Lacey to discuss N Wallis, The Great Post Office Scandal (Bath Publishing 2021).

The event is generously supported by Kent Law School, the Division for the Study of Law, Society & Social Justice (LSSJ), and the FutureHuman fund.

Please note that the event will be recorded.

The event is free but ticketed. Register your place now.




University Mental Health Charter Update and Wellbeing in the Curriculum

From Lee Fellows | Deputy Director  of Student Services and Head of Student Support & Wellbeing

In September 2021, the University signed up to the Student Mental Health Charter. The Charter Programme brings together universities committed to university mental health to share practice and create cultural change. As part of this programme, the Charter Award, which we intend to apply for in 2023, recognises the promotion of good mental health and practice across all areas of the University.

The award is not just about the wellbeing support we offer students in Divisions and across Student Services but looks at how the university as a whole institution works to improve mental wellbeing across 5 key domains; Learn, Support, Work, Live and Enabling Themes. Each framework area has several themes within it, and as an institution, we will be assessed against each theme for the award.

Within the Learn domain we are beginning to review what wellbeing in the curriculum looks like for the University of Kent. We know that already there will be a variety of interesting and different approaches that Divisions, PSDs and individuals will use and this where we need your help.

To assist us with collating what we already do we would be grateful if you would complete this form letting us know what you do (or would like to do!) within lectures, seminars and outside the classroom environment that promotes wellbeing in the curriculum. We are also asking you to complete this form if you have any ideas on potential University-wide initiatives that we could take on board to incorporate wellbeing into the curriculum. No activity, initiative or idea is too big, small or wrong.

More information on the Mental Health Charter can be found here.  You may also find the AdvanceHE Education for Mental Health Toolkit to be a helpful resource.

REF Results Presentation: Thursday 12 May

You are warmly invited to the REF2021 results presentation which will be delivered by Professor Shane Weller, Deputy Vice-Chancellor for Research and Innovation, followed by refreshments in the Wolf Foyer. As well as a great opportunity to celebrate achievements, it will be a chance to catch up with colleagues.

Date: 12 May 2022

Time: 11am-1pm

Location: Wolf Lecture Theatre

We would be very grateful if you could confirm your attendance by signing up through the link below:


If you would prefer to join virtually, please email researchexcellence@kent.ac.uk and a Teams link will be sent to you.

We look forward to seeing you.

National Day for Staff Networks – 11 May

We’re celebrating the National Day for Staff Networks on Wednesday 11 May and the theme for this year is #ViableVisibleVoices.

Our Staff Equalities Networks provide space for under-represented staff at the University of Kent to feel they can bring their authentic selves to work, to make change with the support of a network behind them, and feel included in their workplace. They are crucial to creating a culture of inclusion across all our campuses.

These are just some of the highlights of their work:

The Disability Staff Network have been working with Estates to improve the accessibility of our buildings by taking Accessibility Tours. These tours aim to give a better understanding of the campus experience for disabled staff and students.

The LGBT+ Staff Network have continued to advocate for the rights and inclusion of trans staff and students here at the University and in the greater communities of Kent and Medway. Co-Chair Lynne Regan has shared her research into the experiences of trans students and shared her findings with Executive Group and the wider community of staff and students at Kent. The network has also re-designed our inclusive lanyards, updating the traditional Pride flag to the Progress Flag, and including a strap with the Trans Inclusion flag.

The BAME Staff network have completed their work on a pivotal report that will inform the University of Kent’s antiracism strategy for years to come. The first of its’ kind, the network surveyed all staff on their thoughts of the culture of the institution and the effectiveness of EDI policies and procedures.

The Women’s Network focus on the professional development and experiences of women who work at the University. They share resources on dealing with menopause while working, and keep their members informed of new policies that might affect them. This year they hosted Professor Jennifer Leigh on International Women’s Day, who gave a talk on Intersectionality, exploring challenges for women in STEM and ableism.

Thank you to all our Staff Networks for their valuable work!

If you’d like to join any of the above Staff Networks, please email equalityanddiversity@kent.ac.uk.