Pro Vice-Chancellor shortlisted for Asian Women of Achievement Award

Dr Zainab Khan’s work to widen participation and further equality in higher education has seen her nominated for the awards in the Public Service category.

Date: 15 May 2020

London Met’s Pro Vice-Chancellor, Dr Zainab Khan, has been shortlisted for the Asian Women of Achievement (AWA) Awards in the Public Service category.   

The AWA Awards were founded by Pinky Lilani CBE DL in 1999 to celebrate multicultural Britain and the contribution of diverse cultures and talents to UK society. They aim to platform the phenomenal Asian women across the UK and across industries who are making a valuable and important contribution to British life.

Dr Khan is a Director of the Centre for Equality and Inclusion at London Met and a multi-award-winning advocate for inclusion and race equity in education. Her work has received national recognition at the prestigious Guardian University Award in 2019.

Prior to her academic career, Zainab trained as a barrister and holds a PhD in legal philosophy. Her doctorate examines the exclusionary dimensions to public participation in environmental decision-making, exploring the experiences of marginalised groups, the relationship between State and citizen as well as the impact of the Anthropocene on non-human interests.

She said: “It is a huge honour to be shortlisted for the AWA Awards. My work at London Met focuses on delivering fair outcomes for students from diverse backgrounds and fostering an inclusive culture for everyone, so I know how important it is to celebrate the achievements of ethnic minority women.

“Initiatives like these awards are crucial for combatting underrepresentation and for highlighting the contribution that minorities make to the UK. According to the Race in the Workplace Review (MacGregor Smith 2017) Pakistani women in particular face significant marginalisation in the labour market. I feel very privileged to be recognised in this way and spurred on to do even more to champion the contribution of all marginalised groups."

Nominated alongside Dr Khan in the Public Service category are: Nitya Khemka, Head of Office UK, United Nations office of Project Services; Mel Nebhrajani, Legal Director, Government Legal Department; Dr Geum Young Min, Head of Commercial Data Acquisition, Data as a Service, Office for National Statistics; and Neata Simpson, Detective Sergeant, West Midlands Police.

Pinky Lilani, Chairman of the Awards, said: “This is the 20th year of the Asian Women of Achievement awards, the most established and prestigious programme for Asian business leaders, community workers and cultural figures in the UK. When I started this project, my hope was to spotlight talented but often unsung Asian women. Today, our vision is that these awards should be the pre-eminent platform for celebrating the contribution of diverse cultures and talents to UK society.”

Patron of the Awards, HRH Princess Badiya bint El Hassan, said: “I am delighted to be involved with these wonderful awards. The awards are a great way to celebrate the broad range of achievements of Asian women in Britain, and to encourage future successes. Winning and indeed being shortlisted for one of these accolades is a valuable credential.”

Zainab Khan