Clifford Chance is the newest supporter of Cambridge’s pioneering lgbtQ+ initiative
Many famous and notable queer people have been educated at Cambridge, but until recently no centres or institutes have focused on queer studies. In 2018, the University launched lgbtQ+@cam to promote interdisciplinary research, outreach and network building related to queer, trans and sexuality studies at the University of Cambridge.
Based in the Department of Sociology and working closely with allied initiatives in other faculties and centres, the lgbtQ+@cam programme combines small focused workshops and seminar series with larger conferences and events. The programme aims to enhance existing teaching and research in lgbtQ+ studies at Cambridge and build stronger links to queer research and programmes of study nationally and internationally. Its goal is to increase participation and research in this field and to transform higher education as a result.
A cornerstone of lgbtQ+@cam is the Out at Cambridge research project. Developed in response to the 2018 Stonewall Report on discrimination towards LGBTQ+ students at British universities, which suggested 42% disguise or conceal their LGBTQ+ identities because they fear hostile or unwelcome reactions to disclosure. The project explored the methods students and staff at Cambridge use to manage their LGBTQ+ identities within the university community. The Out at Cambridge report published its findings in October 2019 and is now being used to encourage policy and welfare changes to make universities and workplaces safer spaces and to support resources that are already making a difference to LGBTQ+ identifying students and staff.
Since its launch, philanthropy has played a vital role in lgbtQ+@cam's work, with the funding of a doctoral position for LGBTQ+ related research. International law firm, Clifford Chance is the newest supporter of lgbtQ+@cam, having given a generous donation towards its work.
The donation will make a huge difference for the flagship LGBTQ+ research programme at Cambridge, and the Department of Sociology, as well as the wider University. Without this much needed support we could not achieve our goal of establishing Cambridge as a world-leading centre of LGBTQ+ Studies, nor could we accelerate our efforts to extend the collaborations in this field that are already a hallmark of Cambridge’s Q+ programme. We look forward to working closely with Clifford Chance as one of our main supporters in this ground-breaking subject area.
Clifford Chance see inclusion as an intrinsic value of their firm and seek to champion and campaign for LGBT+ causes. Commenting on the gift, Narind Singh, Partner and Inclusion Committee Co-Chair at Clifford Chance said:
"Creating equal opportunities for all is at the heart of Clifford Chance and deepening knowledge is key to achieving real progress. The launch of LGBTQ+@cam has provided an excellent platform to strengthen understanding of deeply under-researched subjects and we are delighted to be providing investment to support this important work."