About Us

The Directorate

At DiveIn, we redefine the conventional Centre for Doctoral Training (CDT) model with a vision that places diversity at the core. Unlike traditional models centred around restrictive scientific themes, DiveIn prioritises the richness of our postgraduate research student (PGR) cohorts. Our commitment to diversity spans fields, thoughts, backgrounds, and demographics. You can read more about our innovative CDT model in our funding application to EPSRC. We aim to train a critical mass of role models, leaders, and innovators from marginalised groups to improve representation and form a community of practice that will transform the sector.

  • Professor Qammer Abbasi


    I am a Professor, Theme lead for Connecting People at the James Watt School of Engineering at the University of Glasgow, and Co-Director for the Communication Sensing & Imaging Hub. I have a grant portfolio of £10m+ from local/international funders, as well as industrial partners. I have published more than 400 papers in peer reviewed journals (including Nature Portfolio) and conferences, in addition to 11 edited books.

    I am the chair of IEEE APS/MTT UK, Ireland and Scotland chapter, Vice Chair for IEEE Young Professional Committee at Antenna and Propagation society and I am a Fellow of the European Alliance of Innovation, the Royal Society of Arts, the Institution of Engineering and Technology, as well as a Senior Member of IEEE. I am working/worked with researchers from over 20 nationalities, including refugees, those from war zones and/or developing countries, and I am a strong advocate for diversity.

  • Professor Ross Forgan


    I am Professor of Supramolecular and Materials Chemistry and the Head of the Functional Molecules and Assemblies research grouping in the School of Chemistry at the University of Glasgow. I lead a thriving research program in the development of new porous materials for green energy and nanomedicinal applications. I am also a parent of two young children, and previously led the School of Chemistry’s Athena SWAN efforts, so I am hugely excited by the genuine prospect for changing the academic research culture that the DiveIn CDT represents.

  • Professor Caroline Gauchotte-Lindsay


    I am a Professor in Environmental Chemistry and Engineering at the University of Glasgow. My diverse and thriving research group carry out research at the interface of biotechnology and analytical chemistry, developing innovative solutions to the world’s most pressing environmental challenges, particularly towards the sustainable development goal 6, clean water and sanitation. Our work is anchored in real-world issues through solid partnerships with industry and policy makers. I am also committed to creating a future where every researcher can thrive and reach their full potential, this is why I have led the visNET programme and I am excited to “DiveIn”.

  • Dr Caroline Müllenbroich


    I am a Lecturer in the School of Physics and Astronomy at the University of Glasgow, where my team and I work on developing novel optical microscopy techniques to investigate the function and structure of the heart. I am also working to increase inclusion and diversity in the STEM community. For example, I led the Conference for Undergraduate Women and Nonbinary Physicists in Glasgow which aimed at encouraging participants to persist with their studies and reignite their joy in physics. I believe that physics is for everyone and can make all kinds of people thrive and in turn physics itself will thrive, once it is pursued by all kinds of people. I see the DiveIn CDT as an opportunity to create a sense of belonging in the next diverse generation of researchers and so enable them to make the next breakthroughs in science and innovation.

    Find out more about Caroline here (University of Glasgow)

International Steering Group

We are proud to work with our International Steering Group to deliver DiveIn.

  • Dr Ben Britton

    Associate Professor and Associate Head of Department (Graduates), and Visiting Reader
    University of British Columbia and Imperial College London

    I want to contribute expertise, advice and mentoring to DiveIn.

    My research focusses on developing understanding of materials, typically metals and alloys used in structural applications. I tend to focus on how we can improve and use state-of-the-art characterization techniques, including a core focus of the-research-group-I-lead’s work on electron backscatter diffraction (EBSD). ..In addition to our technical work, I guide our graduate program in Materials Engineering at UBC and I work to improve equity/diversity/inclusion and belonging in STEM, with a focus on improving outcomes for LGBTQ+ individuals in STEM.

    Find out more about Ben here (University of British Columbia) and his work with the Experimental Micromechanical Characterisation Research Group here

  • Dr Kay Guccione

    Head of Research Culture and Researcher Development
    University of Glasgow

    This is the first emergence of truly PGR-centred doctoral programme, and as such is rich ground for trying out some of the newer theories and practices around doctoral education. Leadership minds are open to doing different and doing better for PGRs, and I wanted to lend my support to that. 

    In July 2022 I took up the post of Head of Research Culture and Researcher Development, leading the work of the Research Culture and Researcher Development Team. ..Since starting my career as a Researcher Developer in 2010, I’ve developed specialisms and research interests in mentoring, supervisor development and research community building – anything that revolves around a good quality conversation and the making of a positive research culture. In 2018 I was awarded a National Teaching Fellowship in recognition of my impact in this area. I am a Principal Fellow of the Higher Education Academy (awarded for strategic impact in researcher development) and a Masters qualified Leadership Coach.

    See some of Kay’s key research and practice interests listed below:

    Find out more about Kay here (LinkedIn) and here (University of Glasgow) 

  • Professor Muhammad Ali Imran

    Dean of Graduate Studies and Dean of Transnational Education
    University of Glasgow

    I am a passionate advocate for active engagement, firmly believing in its power to foster equal opportunities and inclusivity, particularly in the realm of postgraduate training. Hailing from the BAMĘ community, I intimately understand the transformative impact that support can have on individuals’ careers. To translate my convictions into action, I have actively participated in James Watt School of Engineering’s Equality, Diversity, and Inclusion (EDI) committees. ..Beyond advocacy, I’ve taken tangible steps to empower disadvantaged groups within my team, facilitating access to valuable opportunities.

    My research journey reflects my commitment to collaboration and multidisciplinarity, earning recognition for fostering a supportive research culture. I am driven to extend these principles beyond my immediate sphere, eager to share best practices on a broader scale. At the core of my scientific contributions lies a unifying theme: the exploration of future digital connectivity solutions. My research seeks to bridge the digital divide, ensuring that individuals from all walks of life can partake in equal opportunities across education, health, and various societal benefits.

    Find out more about Muhammad here (University of Glasgow)

  • Dr Izzy Jayasinghe

    Associate Professor and Head of Department
    University of New South Wales

    I wanted to support a programme of doctoral training that prioritised diversity and inclusion. I work in the areas of biophysics and biophotonics, applying some of the newer optical microscopy methods to understanding the structural basis of cell signalling. Outside of my research work, I have been involved in a few initiatives to boost the diversity and visibility of women, LGBTQ+ people, and people of colour, in the academic STEM sector in the UK. ..As someone who experienced the mismatched between the high performing approach to research and the recognition and inclusion one necessarily gets from their peers, a mismatch driven by the biases and prejudices of society, I made a decision to devote this time to the dismantling of those vicious gradients.

    Find out more about Izzy here (UNSW Sydney), and here (blogs), as well as her work with the Signalling Nanodomains Lab here

  • Dr Nathalie Lidgi-Guigui

    Associate Professor
    Université Sorbonne Paris Nord

    I want to contribute to DiveIn because it seems to be an opportunity to work with an open, caring, and qualified team on a fundamental subject in the academic environment. It’s not just about wanting, but about proposing effective solutions to the lack of diversity in our laboratories.

    I am a physicist specialized in metallic nanoparticles and their interactions with light. ..I am using them to detect pollutants in water. Additionally, I am an enthusiastic teacher interested in finding ways to teach in a motivating manner, and I have tried many different approaches over the years, ranging from playing to movie making! The line between teaching and popularizing is thin. I have been popularizing science since I was a teenager. Currently, I am the vice president of my university, responsible for science and society. My aim is to use science popularization as a tool for inclusivity. My concern about the place of women in academia has grown with the number of studies highlighting their discrimination.

    Research, teaching, popularization and inclusivity may seem like a lot, but I actually consider it to be just one topic! I am honored to be part of the DiveIn steering committee and to work towards better welcoming all new researchers.

    Find out more about Nathalie here (LinkedIn), and on her website here

  • Sir David W. C. MacMillan

    Professor of Chemistry
    Princeton University

    As a graduate of the University of Glasgow, I am committed to expanding educational access for talented students who are traditionally underrepresented in the sciences.

    I was born in Bellshill, Scotland, and received my undergraduate degree in chemistry at the University of Glasgow, where I worked with Dr. Ernie Colvin. In 1990, I began doctoral studies under the direction of Professor Larry Overman at the University of California, Irvine, before undertaking a postdoctoral position with Professor Dave Evans at Harvard University in 1996. ..I began my independent career at the University of California, Berkeley, in July of 1998 before moving to Caltech in 2000 as the Earle C. Anthony Chair of Organic Chemistry. In 2006, I moved to Princeton University as the A. Barton Hepburn Professor of Chemistry. I served as Department Chair from 2010–2015 and am currently the James S. McDonnell Distinguished University of Chemistry. I share the 2021 Nobel Prize in Chemistry with Benjamin List and was Knighted by Queen Elizabeth II in 2022. My research interests encompass a wide range of organic chemistry, including the development of new areas in organocatalysis and photoredox catalysis. I am committed to supporting students from diverse backgrounds, and I welcome the opportunity to participate in this exciting initiative.

    Find out more about David and his work with the MacMillan Group here (Princeton University)

  • Robert Mokaya OBE FRS

    Professor of Materials Chemistry and Pro-Vice-Chancellor for Global Engagement
    University of Nottingham

    I have been Pro-Vice-Chancellor (Global Engagement) at the University of Nottingham since 2019. I received my B.Sc. in Chemistry from the University of Nairobi after which I spent a year working for Unilever in Kenya. I was awarded my Ph.D. from the University of Cambridge in 1992. That same year I was elected to a Research Fellowship at Trinity College, Cambridge and in 1996 was awarded an EPSRC Advanced Fellowship. ..I joined the School of Chemistry in Nottingham as a lecturer in Materials Chemistry in 2000, was promoted to Reader in 2005, and to Professor of Materials Chemistry in 2008. In 2016 to 2018, I was Associate Pro-Vice-Chancellor for Global Engagement. I am a Royal Society Wolfson Research Merit Award holder (2017-2022). In 2022, I as appointed OBE for Services to the Chemical Sciences, and in 2023 was elected Fellow of the Royal Society (FRS).

    Find out more about Robert here (University of Nottingham)

  • Carol Monaghan

    SNP Member of Parliament for the UK Government
    Scottish National Party

    I was born and brought up in Glasgow North West, graduating from Strathclyde University with a BSc (Hons) in Laser Physics and Optoelectronics in 1993. I then trained as a teacher, gaining a PGCE in Physics and Mathematics before working in various Glasgow comprehensive schools, prior to becoming the Scottish National Party (SNP) MP for Glasgow North West in 2015.

    I am on the House of Commons Science and Technology Committee, I am Chair of the APPG on Photonics and Vice-Chair of the APPG on Surgical Mesh Implants. ..In addition, I am the SNP’s Westminster Spokesperson for Education, Armed Forces and Veterans, and I have led the campaign in the UK Parliament to change attitudes towards Myalgic Encephalomyelitis (ME), leading two landmark debates on the research and treatment on the condition and on the controversial PACE trial.

    Find out more about Carol and her work as an MP here

  • Professor Rachel Oliver

    Professor of Materials Science
    University of Cambridge

    I am excited about the opportunity that DiveIn presents to not only welcome a diverse PhD student cohort, but also to drive a healthier research culture and a more interdisciplinary approach to research.

    I am the Director of the Cambridge Centre for Gallium Nitride. The focus of my research is understanding how the small scale structure of nitride materials effects the performance and properties of devices. ..I use expertise in microscopy and materials growth to develop new nanoscale nitride structures that will provide new functionality to the devices of the future. I am a founder of a spinout company, Poro Technologies Ltd, which is commercialising porous nitride technology developed in my lab. I am also a passionate advocate for increased equality, diversity and inclusion in science and engineering and a member of the Royal Academy of Engineering’s Diversity and Inclusion Committee.

    Find out more about Rachel’s work with the Cambridge Centre for Gallium Nitride here

  • Professor Sheila Rowan

    Director of the Institute for Gravitational Research
    University of Glasgow

    I have a longstanding interest in encouraging everyone who wants to, to be able to participate in the field of science I have worked in the field of gravitational wave detection as a researcher for more than two decades. I graduated as an undergraduate, and postgraduate student from the University of Glasgow, and spent time after that working as a researcher split between Glasgow and Stanford University in the US. ..I came back full time to the UK in 2003 and became Director of the Institute for Gravitational Research here in 2009. I have strong interests both in the carrying out of research – where I work in large international collaborations – and in how we advocate for the importance of science and the support of science. Following those interests up, I took up the post of Chief Scientific Advisor to the Scottish Government from 2016-2021, was President of the UK Institute of Physics 2021-2023 and am currently (from end November 2023 for 5 years) Physical Secretary of the Royal Society of London.

    Find out more about Sheila here (University of Glasgow)

  • Professor Annela Seddon

    Professor of Physics and University Academic Director of Doctoral Training Entities
    University of Bristol

    I have been involved in PGR training since 2009 and am passionate about finding ways to support postgraduate students in developing their skills and themselves and ensuring that their PhD experience is as positive as it can be. DiveIn offers a genuinely new way of building a cohort which overturns traditional discipline barriers and focuses on the student – this is brave and innovative and I’m excited to have the chance to be a part of it!     

    My research focuses on the use of x-ray and neutron scattering techniques to understand the nanoscale structure of soft matter. ..It is very interdisciplinary and means I have the chance to collaborate with a wide range of other researchers, and learn from how they do things. As the University Academic Director of Doctoral Training Entities, my role is to ensure a vibrant and supportive environment for all PGRs at the University – from part time self-funded students studying in the Arts, to industry funded Engineering students working as part of a huge research project. I engage with these students to help figure out what kind of training and support they need, and support the University in applying for funding to build our PGR community. This means being mindful of where our students come from, and the diversity of experiences they have. I also have a role within EPSRC as the Chair of a High Level Group who looks after all the National Research Facilities in the UK, and supports the Directors of these facilities to be able to offer access to world leading equipment to the whole scientific community. 

    Find out more about Annela here (University of Bristol)

The University of Glasgow

As the home of the DiveIn CDT, the University of Glasgow has an extensive track record for their work in equity diversity and inclusion and interdisciplinary research.

These programmes have contributed to the University of Glasgow being a safe and welcoming space to study and have demonstrated that communities can be built across scientific subjects. The University of Glasgow is therefore the ideal place to first translate these learnings into a pioneering CDT.