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women in a classroom

In our Computer Science Department, we are delighted to be playing a key role in improving diversity and opportunity for women.

We’re a member of the N8 Centre of Excellence in Computationally Intensive Research (N8 CIR), which has been recognised as a chapter of the Women in High Performance Computing (WHPC) organisation.

We are also working closely with industry on training individuals from minority groups into tech careers.

Inspiring women in High Performance Computing (HPC)

Dr Marion Weinzierl, a research software engineer (RSE) at Durham, was recently included on a list of trailblazing women in High Performance Computing (HPC).

Marion, who is also the N8 CIR RSE theme leader, said: “I’m thrilled that the N8 CIR has become recognised as a chapter of WHPC. Our group is open to everyone and welcomes contributions and support from all genders and gender identities.”

The Women in High Performance Computing (WHPC) chapter is committed to addressing the issue of gender balance within the N8 CIR.

It strives to improve the gender balance at workshops by identifying barriers that women face when applying for places, identifying and challenging reasons why there are so few women in senior roles in HPC and raising the profile of people from underrepresented groups.

TechUP Women

TechUP Women, our award- winning programme took 100 women from the Midlands and North of England, particularly from underrepresented communities: BAME (54%); LGBTQ+ (21%); with disabilities (46%) or dependants (40), with degrees or experience in any subject area.

It retrained them in technology via a six-month online programme, developed in collaboration with industry, in preparation for roles as software developer, data scientist, agile project manager and business analyst.

Our TechUP Women graduates have found new roles or promotions in a wide range of industries including manufacturing, software, education, service and the public sector.

TechUP Women won the Employment and Skills category in the UK Impact Awards 2020.

Bede Supercomputer

We are proud to host Bede, the new £3.8m N8 Centre of Excellence in Computationally Intensive Research (N8 CIR).

It is a high-performance computing platform used in areas like Artificial Intelligence (AI), energy storage and therapeutic drug design.

We are also host to the Science and Technology Facilities Council DiRAC Memory Intensive Supercomputer (COSMA), used across particle physics, cosmology, astronomy and nuclear physics programmes.

We’re working hard to increase diversity in computer science, including setting up the Durham University Women in Tech society, while also running Computer Science for Girls to help female GCSE and A-level students discover computer science.

Find out more

Our Department of Computer Science is growing, with ambitious plans for the future and an inclusive, vibrant and international community at its heart. Ranked as a UK Top 10 Department (Complete University Guide 2023), our students develop knowledge and gain essential and transferable skills through high quality teaching, delivered by a passionate team of leading academics.

Feeling inspired? Visit our Computer Science webpages to learn more about our postgraduate and undergraduate programmes.

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