Posted on 14 February 2018
On Thursday 22 February the Audio Engineering Society (AES) North of England section will be hosting a panel session at the University on gender equality in the audio industries under the banner of the #HeforShe United Nations campaign.
The session will be chaired by Dr Mariana Lopez, Senior Lecturer from the Department and newly appointed Chair of AES UK. Joining Dr Lopez to share unique experiences and perspectives from their own work will be a panel of five experts:
- Dr Jude Brereton (Senior Lecturer of Audio and Music Technology, University of York)
- Kat Young (PhD researcher, University of York)
- Dr Liz Dobson (Senior Lecturer in Music Technology, University of Huddersfield)
- Emmanuel Vaas (Senior Lecturer in Professional Studies and Music Business, Leeds College of Music; International Pianist)
- Barkley McKay (Touring and Session Musician; Tutor).
Discussions will focus on the current challenges surrounding gender equality in the industry and the tangible actions that can be taken to foster change. As the first female chair of the AES, Dr Mariana Lopez is an active campaigner on the diversity agenda. Speaking on the relevance of the issue, Dr Mariana Lopez said: “It is crucial that the issue of gender equality is addressed in the audio industries; it benefits everyone to have gender equality, not just women”.
Mariana continued: “Young women are often discouraged from following audio careers because of the lack of strong female role models and those that enter the industry are often faced with sexist comments or are under-recognised for their achievements”.
By encouraging conversation and attention to the topic Mariana noted her hopes for future change. She said: "We all need to make a commitment to speak up when we witness sexist behaviour. Men, for example, could make positive change by pushing for diversity on public speaker panels. If we all start doing our part, both men and women, things will start changing."