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Our People

A group of people looking at books

Our people are our greatest asset. We are a community of highly talented individuals working together and with our students to improve the world around us. We want to develop our people to be their very best and to attract the very best.

Together we celebrate difference and value one another. We are each responsible for creating an inclusive community that is respectful and fair to all.

University Strategy

What we are already doing well: 

  • We have invested in increasing our core academic and teaching staff by almost 300, strengthening both our research expertise and teaching excellence.  
  • We launched our first pan-institutional Health and Wellbeing Strategy, with the aim of creating a more responsible, attractive and productive place to work and study. 
  • A workload project is currently underway to ensure fair, transparent and achievable workloads in the future.   
  • We have created Working Principles to address feedback from staff about work-life balance.   
  • Steady progress is being made to reduce our Gender Pay Gap (GPG). We have reduced the GPG mean by 4.3 per cent from when statutory reporting began in 2017.
  • We offer our staff maternity, adoption and paternity benefits from the start of their employment and we have increased the period of full pay available whilst on maternity or adoption leave from a maximum 16 weeks to 26 weeks. We are one of only four Higher Education institutions in the UK to offer this level of benefit.  
  • We operate hybrid working, encouraging work-life balance and reducing our carbon footprint.  

We will: 

  • Ensure our equity and inclusiveness as an employer through our newly established People Committee of Council, so staff can flourish in their professional and academic careers.
  • Foster an ethos of working well together, mutual respect, wellbeing and a positive working culture which empowers our staff. 
  • Continue our approach to fixed-term contracts to deliver on our commitments to technicians and researchers. 
  • Nurture our new academics, focusing recruitment on educational growth and on senior researchers.  
  • Enhance the teaching focused career pathway to develop our expert educator capacity in assessment. 
  • Promote greater diversity and enable the differentiation of roles and working patterns, support large grant winners and incentivise research performance.
  • Develop the concept of the ‘Durham Professional’. This will support the development of our professional services staff and ensure their contribution and expertise is acknowledged and recognised. 
  • Develop a Career Development Pathway for our early career staff.