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Equality, diversity and inclusion

We aim to be effective in capturing and listening to relevant and appropriate voices, especially including people who feel isolated or excluded by geography, ethnicity, sexual identity, culture, technology or socioeconomic status.

Our definitions


Equality involves ensuring everyone has equal opportunities and is not treated differently or discriminated against because of the following characteristics:

  • age
  • disability
  • gender reassignment
  • marriage and civil partnership
  • pregnancy and maternity
  • race
  • religion or belief
  • sex
  • sexual orientation.


Diversity refers to representation, and an understanding that each individual is unique, taking into account and valuing the differences between people and groups of people.


Inclusion involves deliberate action to meet the needs of different people, so everyone feels and is respected, valued and safe. It includes cultural and environmental belonging, where everyone feels respected and valued for who they are and there is equal opportunity to connect and contribute.

Our priorities

We recognise health inequalities and the wider determinants of health create numerous barriers to successful ageing. Inequalities based on material disadvantage, ethnicity, gender, sexual identity and place of residence are commonplace, as is ageism.

The priorities underpinning our programme are:

  • Addressing health inequalities in our research priorities.
  • Reducing inequalities in health and promotion of equitable access to care.
  • Delivering research evidence to policy makers with reflects the diversity of the population.
  • Addressing inequality at every level of our research, design, conduct and governance.
  • Adopting a proactive and flexible approach in our engagement and inclusion, as well as in capturing and listening to relevant and appropriate voices through research participation, research outputs and impact.

We also adhere to the practices and principles outlined in the INVOLVE Practical Guide to Being Inclusive in Public Involvement in Health Research (PDF). Hear from some of our valued Experts by Experience in this YouTube video:


Audit and actions

In November 2020, we undertook an audit of all our current projects, assessing our current outputs against our overarching principles of equality, diversity and inclusion.

We did this to give us an insight into research areas where greater focus and attention is required as we co-develop and co-create the unit’s programme of work for the coming two to three years.

We have also awarded a PhD studentship specifically looking at how to underpin considerations of equality and inequality in evidence synthesis addressing health and social care policy questions.

Watch a video about PhD candidate Patience Kunonga’s research proposal.


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