By: 7 November 2023
Aston University-led project to help NHS to tackle discrimination and bullying in the workplace

An Aston University co-led project has received NIHR (National Institute for Health and Care Research) Work and Health Research Programme funding that will support happiness and health in the workplace.

‘EDI Smart-Dash: Supporting health organisations to develop a more inclusive working environment’ is co-led by Professor Roberta Fida from Aston University and the University of Glasgow’s Professor Rosalind Searle at Adam Smith Business School.

It will aim to understand how NHS hospitals currently assess and deal with staff equality, diversity and inclusion (EDI) and the challenges they experience. It will also undertake preliminary work to develop a ‘smart’ information tool supporting NHS workplaces to diagnose the problems they face, identify effective changes to make and how to make them.

The programme has awarded £1.5 million in funding to 13 development award projects in total.

The development funding marks the beginning of a substantial investment to boost work and health research within the UK. The research will find better ways to support working age people to remain in, return to, and leave work healthier and happier.

Roberta Fida, professor of organisational behaviour and organisational psychology at Aston University and co-principal investigator of the project, said: “We are excited to start this project in collaboration with NHS senior leaders and ethnic minority associations such as BAPIO (British Association of Physicians of Indian Origin).”

“This project will allow the development of an evidenced based EDI dashboard which will support NHS leaders to monitor and further improve the working culture.”

Professor Rosalind Searle said: “Our health workforce draws on the talents from across the world to provide outstanding care. Yet this is a workforce that experiences high levels of bullying, harassment and discrimination.”

“This exciting new evidence-based project combines the skills of researchers from work psychology, human resources and computer science working alongside staff members from NHS trusts to better understand the challenges faced, the current data and identify how it could be improved.”

You can find out more about the project here.