Manchester Metropolitan University

Our School and Athena SWAN

Equality Challenge Unit's Athena SWAN Charter was established in 2005 to encourage and recognise commitment to advancing the careers of women in science, technology, engineering, maths and medicine (STEMM) employment in higher education and research.

For more information please visit Equality Challenge Unit: Athena SWAN Charter

The School of Computing, Mathematics and Digital Technology is committed to promoting gender balance within its academic community.  Its subject disciplines have typically been male dominated and there is a genuine desire within the School to ensure that women are fully supported in their career development to achieve their full potential and that the School is an attractive and supportive destination for female students. 

The School contributed to the University's success in gaining the Athena SWAN Bronze Award.  A team led by Dr Annabel Latham, a Senior Lecturer in Computer Science, is now working towards gaining the Athena SWAN Bronze for the School of Computing, Mathematics and Digital Technology.  The team, which has representatives from academic staff, technical staff, research students and includes the Head of School, is producing an action plan which seeks to improve further work and study conditions for female staff and students, in an environment where all colleagues feel valued and supported.

Dr Annabel Latham talks about her research, what inspired her to study computer science and why women should consider a career in the field.


Students Union Teacher of the Year

Very many congratulations to Marie Carroll for her award as Teacher of the Year in the Students’ Union annual award on Tuesday. The award is richly deserved. For many years Marie has delivered highly effective, professional and sensitive teaching and support to students. Read more

Case studies


Dr Annabel Latham

I am a Senior Lecturer in Computer Science and I am active in a number of groups trying to inspire young women to join our exciting subject.


Dr Keeley Crockett, Reader

I am a Reader in Computational Intelligence at MMU and leader of the Intelligence Systems Group.

Keeley's staff profile


Dr Lida Nejad

I graduated in Computing and Mathematics from Teesside University in 1981 and completed my Master's degree in Industrial Mathematics at Aston University.

Lida's staff profile


Dr Moi Hoon Yap

I am actively engaged in medical image analysis and facial analysis. My enthusiasm to research and work with students are the main reasons that I chose an academic career.

Moi's staff profile

Dr Emma Norling

Dr Emma Norling

I am an active member of the autonomous agents and multi-agent systems research community, where I am proud to promote opportunities for women and other minority groups.

Emma's staff profile

Amy Khalfay, PhD Student.

I studied BSc Hons Mathematics at Manchester Metropolitan University 2011-2014. I achieved a 1st class honours as well as the Institute of Mathematics (IMA) award. During my undergraduate degree, I particularly enjoyed the statistics modules, and chose a final year project that involved creating statistical software in an engineering software package.

I am currently studying a Ph.D. in computational optimization, at Manchester Metropolitan University, entitled "Task Scheduling with Human Resource Allocation and Routing". I am collaborating with industry, Service Power, a world leader in field service scheduling. Furthermore, I have submitted my first research paper titled "Technician and Task Scheduling using a Multi Assignment Decision Heuristic".

My main research interests include; optimization, statistical analysis, graph colouring, scheduling and timetabling. I am also a member of the Athena Swan project, which seeks to promote STEM subjects to females and improve the gender imbalance in these subjects.

Margaret Eastwood, Honorary Teaching Fellow

Although a Yorkshire woman by birth my rewarding career in mathematics education developed in Manchester, starting with a degree in Mathematics at UMIST in 1967. I went to Didsbury College to train teachers of Mathematics. Later I transferred to the Division of Mathematics at MMU (formerly Manchester Polytechnic) from which I retired as a Senior Lecturer in 2011. I have continued to work as an Honorary Teaching Fellow at MMU, which has facilitated my work for the North West Branch of the Institute of Mathematics and its Applications (IMA).

Until 1995 I worked on various committees, local and national, for the Mathematical Association. I have been a member of the IMA since 1967 and am currently Secretary to the North West Branch, arranging meetings and talks, a role made easier by being able to involve many of the eminent and talented mathematicians I have met.

In 2013 the IMA kindly recognised my work as NW Secretary with a Certificate of Service. This was followed in 2014 by the honour of being presented to HRH The Princess Royal at a meeting at the Royal Society to celebrate the 50th Anniversary of the IMA, of which she is Patron.

I am a Chartered Mathematician and have been invited to speak on some 30 occasions to organisations (including media) throughout the UK on various subjects, but particularly on the use of calculators in schools (still a national issue).

Despite my total commitment to teaching and the professional institutes I have throughout my career pursued my interest in singing, both as a soloist and member of choirs.

My professional career and my singing have given me the joy of making long lasting and supportive friendships.

Dr Liangxiu Han, Reader, Deputy Director of Informatics Research Centre and Deputy Director of Crime and Wellbeing Big Data Centre

I am a Reader in Computer Science, Deputy Director of Informatics Research Centre and Deputy Director of MMU Crime and Wellbeing Big Data Centre, leads the FUNDS (Future Networks and Distributed Systems) Research Group within the School.

My main research interests and expertise cover: 
• Big Data Analysis and Mining (with application domains: Health, Food, Energy, smart cities, etc.) 
• Novel Architectures (e.g. Service-Oriented/Cloud Computing/Internet of Things) 
• Software and Knowledge Engineering 
• Complex Network Theory/Complex Science

The ultimate goal of my research is to tackle societal challenges for sustainable future society.

I have over 14 years research and practical experiences in developing intelligent ICT-enabled software solutions for large-scale data processing and data mining for different application domains (e.g. Biomedical Science, Energy, Fire Engineering, Electronic Engineering, Web Science, etc.) using various large-scale datasets including biomedical images, sensor data, and web pages (funded by TSB, EPSRC, EU-FP7, Government and Industry respectively). I am also Principle investigator or co-Investigator on different projects in relation to large-scale data processing, data analytics and software systems architectures (funded by BBSRC, EPSRC-DHPA, Amazon EC2, Optos, RCUK digital programme, Sustainable Society Network+, etc., Innovate UK. With application areas: such as health, food and agriculture, smart cities, cyber-security, energy). I am a member of EPSRC Peer Review College, independent expert for Horizon 2020, and peer review panel British Council. I am also a reviewer for several prestigious journals and international conferences in the field.

I have one school-aged son. With the support of my husband, we are trying to manage the balance between work and family well.

I have been interested in science since I was very young. I feel a sense of achievement when I solve some problems in real life using a piece of code or when students understand what I have taught them. Additionally, computer science is a dynamic subject. We can always learn new things from it and it is a good way to keep our minds active and sharp.

Marie Carroll, Senior Lecturer

I am a Senior Lecturer in the School of Computing, Maths and Digital Technology (SCMDT) at Manchester Metropolitan University. I am Course Leader for BSc (Hons) Media Technology and FdSc Post Production Technology for Film, TV and CGI, and Coordinator for Level 4 and Level 6.

I joined MMU (then Manchester Polytechnic) in 1991 as a Clerical Assistant in the Faculty of Science and Engineering. I progressed to become Assistant Administrator and then Departmental Administrator in the Department of Electrical and Electronic Engineering. I also covered the post of Research Administrator for a year. Whilst working in administrative roles I studied part time and gained a degree in Information Management.

After graduating in 2001 I was encouraged to apply for a lecturer post, teaching databases, study skills and web to students on the BSc Network in Engineering and Technology. I moved to SCMDT when two of the courses on which I teach were moved as part of a Faculty restructure. I am Unit Leader for the first year units Introduction to Web Design and Development, and Modelling and Animation Fundamentals.

Sandra Fletcher, Technical Team Leader

After completing an HND in Computer Studies at Portsmouth Polytechnic I joined MMU (then Manchester Polytechnic) as a technician in the Department of Physics, Mathematics and Computing.

Whilst working in this role I completed a part-time degree in Applied Computing here and then progressed to Senior Technician.

My current role as Technical Team Leader (Computational Facilities) involves myself and my team in the support of various areas of Computer Science including High Performance Computing Clusters, Database Systems and a new project around Big Data for teaching and research activities.

I am also part of the team who support the School’s Usability Lab used both internally for teaching and research and on a commercial basis.

School Athena SWAN team

Marie Carroll Senior Lecturer, SCMDT
Sandra Fletcher Technical Team Leader, Specialist Computer Sciences, SAS
Annabel Latham Senior Lecturer, SCMDT
Peter McKenna Principal Lecturer (Learning & Teaching), SCMDT
Keith Miller Head of School, SCMDT
Lida Nejad Principal Lecturer (Programme Leader - Mathematics), SCMDT
Stuart McKenna Equality & Diversity Manager
Amy Khalfay Graduate Teaching Assistant
Zoe Johnston HR Business Partner

Contact us

Dr Annabel Latham
SCMDT Athena SWAN co-ordinator
0161 247 1495
Keith Miller
SCMDT Head of School
0161 247 1544 
About Us