Diversity, Equality and Inclusion

Our DEI report 2020

The first Institute of Water Diversity, Equality, and Inclusion (DEI) survey was undertaken in 2015 and the results were used to underpin our DEI policy, aims and action plan for the past five years. In October 2020, a further survey was conducted using similar questions to those asked in 2020 and the key findings have now been published in our Diversity Equality and Inclusion Report 2020.

Black Voices in the Water Industry

We have recently released a Black Voices in the Water Industry video as a platform for BAME people within the water industry to share their experiences of racism. You can watch the video here and start your journey to become a better ally.

Our Policy

The Institute of Water is committed to a policy of inclusion and equality for all its staff, members and stakeholders. We recognise the value that a diverse water industry brings to society, and we are committed to promoting these benefits. We aim to be representative of the industry we serve and to ensure that there are no barriers to membership.

We are signatories of the Royal Academy of Engineering Diversity Concordat, the Science Council Declaration on Diversity, Equality and Inclusion, the Energy & Utilities Sector Inclusion Commitment and the Diverse Sustainability Initiative for the sustainability profession and wider environmental sector.

We will:

  • Have a Diversity, Equality and Inclusion Champion from within our Board of Directors.
  • Have a Diversity, Equality and Inclusion Policy and Action Plan, which is reviewed annually and reported at our Annual General Meeting.
  • Ensure that our staff, our Board, Area Committees and our volunteer communities understand their role in ensuring that our membership offering is fully inclusive to individuals and organisations irrespective of their size
  • Benchmark ourselves against other professional bodies and employers in the sector.
  • Deliver initiatives which enable us to promote under-represented groups.
  • Encourage diversity among our volunteer communities, in particular our Area Committees.
  • Support the principle of equal opportunities for our staff, by seeking feedback and taking action as needed.

Rose Shisler is our Diversity, Equality & Inclusion Board Champion

Our Additional Aims for 2021 and beyond

Governance & Leadership:

  • Have a Board level Diversity, Equality and Inclusion (DEI) Champion
  • DEI is featured at all Board meetings
  • DEI is on the agenda for local Area Committee meetings at least once per year
  • Have a DEI Champion on each of our area committees
  • New activities are assessed for DEI impact


  • Unconscious bias training is available for all members

Meetings, Conferences & Events:

  • Webinars have subtitle/transcript capabilities
  • All event invites mention DEI specific to that event
  • Accessibility, catering, content, format should be considered for all events/meetings
  • If possible, events should not clash with religious or national holidays
  • Speaker briefing to include awareness of our commitment to DEI
  • A carer can get a free ticket to event when they accompany the person they care for

Professional Registration, CPD & Training:

  • Content and delivery of all courses are inclusive & appropriate
  • Assessors are given DEI and unconscious bias training
  • Professional Registration is promoted to underrepresented groups

Prizes & Awards:

  • Prizes and awards are inclusive of everyone in our membership
  • Judging panels have had unconscious bias training and are aware of our DEI policy
  • Prizes and awards attract a diverse range of entrants (within scope)
  • Feedback including diversity & inclusion invited from candidates and judges

Communications, Marketing, Outreach & Engagement:

  • All marketing & communications includes a diverse array of media (photos, videos etc)
  • Contributors & designers are informed of our commitment to DEI
  • All marketing & communication considers DEI in terms of its format (Dyslexia, font size, colour blindness) 


  • Staff contracts include statement on expectations around behaviour and mention flexible working
  • DEI is an agenda topic in staff meetings at least annually
  • All employees are supported to develop the skills and abilities they require to carry out their current and any likely future role in the organisation. Equality of access for all staff to both training and development opportunities is key
  • There is an environment where everyone feels valued and is able to perform to their best potential. 

Monitoring & Measuring:

  • Report on DEI to committees and annually to our membership at the AGM
  • Compare DEI of membership with industry and other professional bodies at least every five years
  • Learn from what other companies in the water industry and other professional bodies are doing in terms of DEI
  • Provide a DEI report to members based on the DEI survey

The Institute of Water recognises unconscious bias, actively seeks to identify it and eliminate it from the decisions we make, click here to read more.

For more information on this policy and what we have done to meet this, contact info@instituteofwater.org.uk.