The Society for Post-Medieval Archaeology

Expressions of Interest sought for new EDI Officer role

Wednesday 14 July 2021

Following the Society’s recent adoption of a public Equality, Diversity and Inclusion statement, the SPMA is creating a new Equality, Diversity and Inclusion (EDI) Officer role on its Council.

We invite expressions of interest from any member (or prospective member) of SPMA interested in taking on this important role for an initial period of three years. All expressions of interest will be considered by Council and a preferred candidate nominated by Council for election to the position at the Society AGM in December.

EDI officer role description

The role of the EDI officer is to help put into practice the Society’s philosophy that post-medieval archaeology and our members’ interests are best served by being inclusive and diverse, and that professional bodies such as the SPMA have a positive role to play in fostering and inspiring change. The EDI officer, with support from the President and Council, will facilitate this through proactive and specific steps to remove barriers to participation to its membership and activities, and widen engagement with the archaeology of the modern world more broadly, particularly to those traditionally underrepresented in archaeology.

Officer role

  • Provide advice, guidance and recommendations to Council and members on equality and diversity issues within the Society’s remit, and to research and promote the same [i.e. anti-discriminatory legislation, relevant professional guidelines etc.]
  • Review all of our published statements through an EDI lens and ensure these meet statutory requirements regarding equality legislation
  • Promote the engagement of a wider public in our activities [with membership and meetings officers]
  • Be transparent about our commitment to and raise the visibility of EDI issues in the Society’s newsletter, on social media and in our annual report
  • Provide advice and support for members and those who participate in our activities, particularly from underrepresented and minority groups
  • Identify ways to promote membership of the Society among those from traditionally underrepresented groups [with the membership secretary]
  • Establish and maintain relationships with relevant professional and avocational bodies and interest groups (e.g. ESBAA, CiFA) to learn from others and act on the specific challenges and needs of minority and underrepresented groups, and attend relevant events to represent the Society (i.e. national and international conferences)
  • Help to mediate conflict and respond to complaints whether to or from Council, our members or guests at events
  • Review our philosophy / statement regularly and continuously develop our EDI policies.
  • If capacity permits, develop funding proposals for projects which seek to improve EDI within the Society.

Prior to the EDI Officer taking up their role at the AGM, and to assist the EDI Officer in their work, the SPMA Council has committed to the following actions:

  • Review officer role descriptions [membership; grants; monographs; meetings; newsletter; website] and embed within them specific policies which promote diversity, inclusivity, and accessibility
  • Review the Society’s activities relating to the same
  • Related to the above, develop a code of conduct and ‘zero-tolerance’ policy on harassment/discrimination for the Society’s activities such as lectures and conferences and develop a procedure for reporting any incidents
  • Develop a recruitment process to existing and new roles which is transparent and explicitly welcomes those traditionally underrepresented
  • Establish an EDI taskforce to achieve the above and begin the process of embedding these practices widely within the Society’s outputs, activities, and processes.

To express an interest in becoming the SPMA’s EDI Officer, or with any questions about what the position might entail, please email James Dixon via editor(at)spma.org.uk . Initial expressions of interest will be considered by an EDI sub-group consisting of Alice Samson, Roberto Valcárcel Rojas and James Dixon. The same group will respond to questions.


This initial call is open until Friday 30 July 2021.