GEDC Airbus Diversity Award Inspiring diversity in engineering

The GEDC Airbus Diversity Award recognises the people and projects worldwide which have encouraged students of all profiles and backgrounds to study and succeed in engineering. Together, Airbus and the GEDC want to shine a light on good practice around the world and to inspire others to replicate successful initiatives in their own institutions.

2016 Award - Seoul, South Korea

Three finalists were selected to present their projects to a distinguished jury at the WEEF and GEDC Conference, to be held in Seoul, Korea from 6 - 10 November 2016. The finalists have been honored at the Diversity Award dinner, as part of a gala evening on 7 November celebrating diversity in engineering education, where the 2016 Award recipient has been announced. As the winner of the 2016 GEDC Airbus Diversity Award, Dr Yacob Astatke was awarded USD 10,000 and the two others short-listed candidates with USD 1,500 each. This was intended to both recognise their work in the field to date, and support their continuing initiatives.

Announcing the 2016 winner

Airbus and the Global Engineering Deans Council (GEDC), have named Dr Yacob Astatke, from Morgan State University in the USA, as the recipient of the 2016 GEDC Airbus Diversity Award for his work in engineering education. 

Read the press release

2016 Award - Finalists and Recipient

As well as our 2016 Award recipient, Dr Yacob Astatke, two other remarkable finalists were selected for the 2016 GEDC Diversity Award. Through their work, they have developed initiatives, led programmes and implemented changes which have positively impacted diversity within the global engineering community.

2016 Award - Shortlist

Five other candidates were shortlisted for the 2016 GEDC Diversity Award. 

Airbus and the GEDC (Global Engineering Deans Council) celebrate a new edition of the Diversity Awards

Introducing the 2016 Jury

The esteemed 2016 jury evaluated the finalists’ projects on 7 November and selected this year’s Award recipient.

About the Award

The long-term aim of the GEDC Airbus Diversity Award is to increase diversity among the global community of engineers so that the engineering industry reflects the diversity of the communities it supports, and the wide-ranging work that engineers do.

Highlights from the third GEDC Airbus Diversity Award and the Award ceremony during the Global Engineering Deans Council conference in Adelaide, Australia in December 2015.

What is the Global Engineering Deans Council?

Airbus is a corporate member of the GEDC (Global Engineering Deans Council). This is a leading global organisation whose members are individuals responsible for setting the agenda for higher education in engineering in their countries and universities. 

What Do We Mean by Diversity?

Based on The American Society for Engineering Education definition, diversity is the inclusion of individuals that represent variations in gender, race, ethnic background, disability, sexual orientation, age, socio-economic status, nationality and other non-visible differences resulting in an environment rich in intellectual variety and respect for the individual, and optimally suited to address the technological, business and societal needs of the future.

Who Can Apply?

We’re looking for individuals and projects that have made a measurable difference in increasing diversity and inclusion amongst engineering students and graduates. Applicants can be someone from outside academia, working in collaboration with an institution. Students are not eligible for this award.

Shortlisted candidates will need a Dean of Engineering to support their application. 

What Does The Award Recipient Receive?

Three successful finalists will be invited to attend the WEEF & GEDC Conference in Seoul, Korea, from the 6th – 10th November 2016. The recipient of the GEDC Airbus Diversity Award will receive 10,000 USD and the two runners up will each receive 1,500 USD.

Evaluation and Criteria

Evaluation Process

  • Candidates were invited to submit their applications by 5 September 2016.
  • After all applications were received, the judging panel selected 8 shortlisted candidates. The shortlist was announced in October 2016.  At this stage, all shortlisted candidates were required to have their selection formally supported by a Dean of Engineering. 
  • Eight candidates have been shortlisted for the 2016 Award. Three finalists have been selected to present their projects to a distinguished jury at the WEEF and GEDC Conference, to be held in Seoul, Korea from 6 - 10  November 2016. The finalists will be celebrated at the Diversity Award dinner, as part of a gala evening celebrating diversity in engineering education, where the 2016 Award recipient will be announced.

Evaluation Criteria

The Award Committee will be looking for candidates who have made an impact with their work with the resources available, who can provide evidence that their initiatives have or are generating results and who submit ideas with the potential to be replicated elsewhere, or developed on a bigger scale.

We encourage potential candidates to review the application form to fully understand what the Award Committee is looking for. This includes:

  • Description of the initiative(s), including the origin, approach, implementation and stakeholder involvement.
  • Documented evidence of what was actually done.
  • Clear explanation of the candidate’s/team’s contribution to the initiative and role throughout the project.
  • Impact of the initiative, relative to the resources available to the candidate, with qualitative and quantitative examples of how the impact has been measured.
  • Transferability, including how the initiative(s) could be leveraged for greater scope or reach, or transferred for use in another environment.
  • Evidence of the potential to continue and develop the work further.

Inspiring Initiatives

Fadi Aloul, 2015 Diversity Award Recipient, Adelaide, Australia

"Diversity and inclusion are real business assets; they boost the innovation mind-set that we need to develop the future of aviation. We want to inspire the next generation to take up engineering.” - Charles Champion, Airbus Executive Vice President Engineering and member of the Award Jury

“The growing demand for engineers worldwide means we must attract more talented young people to the industry. Our finalists demonstrate remarkable commitment in creating initiatives that made a real difference in attracting a more diverse group of students to study and complete engineering degrees.” - John Beynon, Immediate Past-Chair of the GEDC and Dean of Engineering, University of Adelaide, Australia 

Get inspired by our previous Award recipients and finalists

& Find out more about their work

The GEDC Airbus Diversity Award in the media

Marita Cheng at the world’s first in-flight Tech Talk

Marita Cheng, 2014 Award Recipient spoke at the world’s first in-flight Tech Talk, from Sydney to San Francisco. Marita is the founder of Robogals Global, which inspires girls aged 10-14 to choose engineering and technical careers.

Read the article and Watch the video

Renetta Tull at the Third International Conference on Transformations in Engineering Education, India

Renetta Tull, 2015 shortlist candidate took the stage for GEDC and Airbus in India, focusing on diversity in engineering at the Third International Conference on Transformations in Engineering Education, January 2016 in Pune, India. 

Read the article