BABAO represents biological anthropologists and osteoarchaeologists with diverse professional expertise, interests and roles.
We are a community brought together by shared interest in the study of skeletal remains of past and present communities. As a group we are diverse in gender, age, nationality, ancestry, sexual orientation, disability, religion, socioeconomic background or family status, and in our work we seek to study the nature and experience of many of these characteristics in the past.
We recognise the benefit of reflecting on issues like equality of opportunity, inclusivity and individual experiences of discrimination or marginalisation in our workplaces for our discipline. We also recognise that as a professional organisation, BABAO offers our members an individual voice to raise concerns and identify problems, as well as a collective influence that has the potential to effect positive change for everyone.
BABAO believes that diversity is a strength, and that as professionals and students we should support and promote equality and inclusivity in all of our activities. We recognise that members may have encountered negative experiences such as discrimination, bullying or exclusion and that the demographic profile of our discipline reflects underrepresentation of certain groups within society. As an organisation we wish to do everything in our power to address such problems.
What do we do?
The BABAO Equality, Diversity and Inclusivity (ED&I) sub-group was set up in 2018 to deliver BABAO’s aims to support ED&I in our organisation and professional community.
We aim to:
- Provide advocacy for ED&I within our discipline
- Raise awareness of ED&I issues
- Ensure BABAO activities, including outreach activities, conferences, website, and email forum are inclusive and welcoming to all
- Share resources via this web page to enable members to promote ED&I in their own workplaces and practices
- Share relevant information with members via the mailing list
- Celebrate diversity within BABAO
- Work to address ED&I issues within our discipline, offering support to members where possible
This page will be updated regularly to reflect our activities and membership.
If you have any issues or topics you wish to bring to the attention of the ED&I sub-group, please don’t hesitate to contact us via our chair, Lizzy Craig-Atkins (e.craig-atkins[at]sheffield.ac.uk).
Who are we?
The ED&I Sub-Group currently comprises four BABAO members. All four are current members and two are Board Trustees of the organisation.
Dr Lizzy Craig-Atkins
Lizzy is Senior Lecturer in Human Osteology at the University of Sheffield, where she has coordinated the MSc Human Osteology and Funerary Archaeology since 2013. Lizzy acts as chair of the Archaeology Department Equality and Diversity Committee and sits on Faculty committees for ED&I. She is the Athena Swan champion for Archaeology, which received its second Bronze Award for gender equality in 2017. Lizzy has a background in Archaeology having studied at Durham (BA), Bradford (MSc) and Sheffield (PhD). Her career has included periods of work in technical, support, part-time and fixed-term roles, all of which have been in Higher Education. Her current role is full-time.
Lizzy chairs the BABAO ED&I sub-committee with the aim of making our discipline more inclusive, supportive and accessible, and is particularly interested in the issues of implicit bias and equality of opportunity.
Lizzy grew up in northern England, is married with no children and her husband works full-time in commercial archaeology. In her spare time she enjoys yoga, figure skating and cooking.
Dr Michael B C Rivera
This year, Michael completed his PhD degree in Biological Anthropology at the University of Cambridge. Previously, he attained an MPhil degree in Biological Anthropology at the University of Cambridge and a BSc in Anthropology from the University of Kent. Michael's research focuses on human skeletal variation and recent human evolution. His PhD research explores the agricultural transition in coastal Baltic populations, using morphometric and palaeopathological data to reconstruct fisher-forager and farmer lifestyles in terms of health, diet and activity.
Michael is the current Communications Officer on BABAO's Board of Trustees and a member of the BABAO Equality, Diversity and Inclusion sub-group. He advocates for ethnoracial representation and LGBTQ+ equity in academia (LGBTQ+ is an acronym that includes individuals who are lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer or questioning sexual identity, or fit under any spectrums of sexuality and gender). He is a Filipino-Chinese scholar, was born in Hong Kong, and has been an international anthropologist in the UK/Europe for the past ten years.
He is currently based in The Hague, Netherlands, where he lives with his boyfriend of four years. He enjoys television, trivia and science communication activities in his spare time, and hosts The Arch and Anth podcast.
Matthew Lee is a commercial archaeologist currently working for MOLA Headland Infrastructure, a consortium of MOLA (Museum of London Archaeology) and Headland Archaeology, having worked for them since 2017. His academic background is in both Archaeology (BSc Cardiff, 2015) and Forensic Anthropology (MSc Bournemouth, 2016). His interests are primarily on human diversity, race and isotopic analyses, and he hopes to pursue PhD research in these themes in the not too distant future.
Matthew joined the Equality, Diversity and Inclusion sub-committee due to his experience as a member of the LGBTQ+ community.
When not digging holes in fields or looking at bones Matthew enjoys reading fantasy novels, playing board games and cooking.
Dr Anna Williams
Dr Anna Williams is Principal Enterprise Fellow (equivalent to Reader) in Forensic Anthropology at the University of Huddersfield, where she runs the MSc in Forensic Anthropology and is a Module Leader for the BSc and MSci courses in Forensic and Analytical Sciences. She specialises in decomposition and taphonomy research, and is casework active. Her background is in Archaeology and Anthropology (MA Oxford, 1998); Forensic Anthropology (MSc, Bradford, 1999) and her PhD (Sheffield, 2005) focused on the determination of the trauma-death interval in bone fractures, using histological methods. After her PhD, Anna was a post-doctoral researcher at Cranfield University for two years, and then Lecturer in Forensic Anthropology there from 2006-2013. She joined the University of Huddersfield in 2013 as a Senior Lecturer and was promoted to Principal Enterprise Fellow in 2015. She is a Fellow of the Higher Education Academy (HEA), the Institute for Civil Protection and Emergency Management (ICPEM) and the Royal Anthropological Institute (RAI). She is Editor of the Crime, Security and Society journal, and serves on the Home Office Search Technologies Academic Research Team (START).
Anna serves on the Equality, Diversity and Inclusion sub-committee of BABAO due to her interest in gender parity in biological and forensic anthropology. She has carried out research into the dominance of women in forensic anthropology education and practice.
She lives on the edge of the Peak District with her husband, and enjoys reading and writing crime fiction.