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Diversity and Inclusion - The Tipper Group

TWI Diversity and Inclusion Statement

As one of the world's leading independent research and technology organisations, we are committed to attracting, motivating and retaining the best talent from around the world. Our goal is to develop the next generation of experts to address future industry challenges.  We are committed to creating a culture that recognises and respects the differences between people while valuing the contribution everyone makes to TWI.  The diversity of our staff and students makes a positive and important contribution to our continuing success.

The Tipper Group

Has someone from a different background or culture ever had the wrong first impression of you?

Have you ever had a bad first impression of someone, only to later realise that they are a great person?

Have you ever placed yourself in a workplace situation where someone was treated unfairly or inappropriately?

These are the types of challenges and situations addressed by The Tipper Group.

Named after the female Cambridge fracture engineer Constance Tipper, the group was launched by staff in 2016 to improve employee experience and employer perception throughout the National Structural Integrity Research Centre, The Welding Institute and TWI, while also promoting diversity and inclusion to a wider audience. In 2018, via The Tipper Group, TWI took a seat at the Royal Academy of Engineering’s diversity and inclusion progression framework implementation steering group.

The Tipper Group encourages and supports the creation and promotion of an inclusive culture that inspires, attracts, recruits and supports career development of people irrespective of gender, ethnicity, age, sexuality, beliefs, (dis)abilities and socio-economic background, by focussing on recognition and the development of skills and competencies.

This includes supporting career progress and peer-to-peer learning, supporting and improving work/life balance, providing programmes of mentoring and peer support, and developing confidence and an awareness of unconscious bias. To meet these objectives, the group also organises a calendar of events, attended by industry and academia, and supported by a strong social media presence.

It is important to note that The Tipper Group operates as a fully inclusive body to allow opinions to be shared and problems solved irrespective of age, gender, sexual orientation, race, neurodiversity, (dis)ability, spiritual belief or any other potentially divisive factors. This basic foundation, as well as the group’s diversity and inclusion activities, aim to develop a culture of openness, respect and tolerance.


Diversity and Inclusion Talk by TWI's CEO Aamir Khalid

The Tipper Group runs an annual programme of events for TWI staff featuring both internal and external speakers.  As part of a Tipper Group TWI staff webinar on Diversity and Inclusion, TWI's CEO Aamir Khalid was invited talk about his background, upbringing and his own life experiences. He shared his vision on the culture he would like to create at TWI, in particular a diverse and inclusive culture where people feel valued and their voices and opinions are encouraged and heard.  Aamir is currently leading a change programme to put Diversity and Inclusion at the heart of our people practices.


Tipper Group Achievements

The Tipper Group has already led to the creation of a Diversity and Inclusion Working Group to explore and lead a culture transformation strategy at TWI. This includes the launch of a ‘Living Our Values’ campaign to embed values of inclusivity into our business functions.

There has been training and an increased awareness of unconscious bias and all inclusion matters across the business through events, publications, meetings and more. This increased awareness has aligned with our recruitment policies, which have seen the promotion of gender inclusive job adverts and recruitment/promotion panels that now must include female representation. Promotions are also closely monitored to take account of gender, disability, race and other potential diversity barriers. The work the Tipper Group carried out has also opened doors to three Women in Leadership programmes, reaching more than 60 female employees.

This has all been supported by internal communications and external engagement with Members, Welding Institute Branches, and the Royal Academy of Engineering. We plan to continue to expand these communications while also delivering a calendar of events to celebrate, honour and promote diversity and inclusion dates such as International Women’s Day.

We understand that diversity and inclusion is important for any business to ensure a happy and productive workforce, while also tapping into the range of opinions, innovations and expertise a more inclusive and diverse company provides. 

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