PDR objectives for Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion

Guidance for Reviewers and Reviewees

Why EDI is important

Equity, Diversity and Inclusion (EDI) is a core element in the University’s strategy. We prioritise activities that identify and remove systemic inequities, associated with protected characteristics and marginalised groups, as well as promote and progress equity and inclusion, towards becoming an anti-discriminatory organisation. This commitment applies to every member of staff.

Changes in EDI don’t happen automatically which is why setting our intention to change and to be accountable for those changes through Professional Development Reviews is so important.  

See the document EDI principles and prioritisation for an explanation of what EDI is and the ethical, legal and business reasons for why the university is prioritising EDI. This document might also give you some ideas for deciding on a relevant EDI objective.

Steps to becoming anti-discriminatory

  1. Being anti-discriminatory means that we proactively identify what we do (or don’t do) in our operations, interactions, planning, and decision making that may cause groups of people who have protected characteristics or who are marginalised in our university community, to be disadvantaged.
  2. We then challenge that way of working to embed positive changes that eliminate negative impact, improve inclusivity, and embrace diversity.
  3. We then monitor that change and seek feedback, where appropriate, to ensure that we maintain a positive impact.  

Please note - you may think that you are already being anti-discriminatory because you are not aware of disadvantaging anyone by the way you carry out your role when in fact you may be being non-discriminatory.

What’s the difference between being anti-discriminatory and non-discriminatory?

Being non-discriminatory means taking no action based on an assumption that our current way of operating is acceptable because there is no intention to discriminate. The problem with this approach is that we often discriminate without intending to, because;

  1. we are operating under discriminatory policies and organisational structures and cultures that have not been challenged or,
  2. we lack awareness of how we impact on others.

No one is exempt from needing to consider EDI in their roles and the requirement to embed anti-discriminatory practice is ongoing so there will always be a discussion about EDI performance objectives in your PDR.

How to decide on an EDI objective

There are 3 levels of objective to consider. Please see below some questions to consider, with examples applied to practice.

Level of EDI Objective

Prompt question

Practice example


What is it that I do/don’t do in my role that may  disadvantages people or causes harm?

‘I have an awareness of my equipment and prevent blocking access for disabled people.’


What is it about the systems, structures  or  policies we use that may disadvantage people or cause harm?

‘We tend not to discuss putting reasonable adjustments in place with disabled international students because we know that there is no allocated funding’.


What is it about our customs, practices or attitudes that may disadvantage people or cause harm?

‘We can seek to have a better understanding of religious holidays and festivals, to design the rota to be more inclusive.'


Tips on deciding EDI objectives

Don’t run before you can walk

You may need to identify a development objective to raise your awareness about an issue before identifying a performance objective e.g., identifying appropriate training or resources.

Don’t use this objective as a tick box exercise

Make sure the objective is relevant to the role and commensurate with the grade.

Work in collaboration

Wherever possible it is a good idea for reviewees to identify relevant objectives, which reviewers can comment on, amend or ‘stretch’ as necessary. EDI objectives that reviewees identify are likely to match their awareness, confidence and competence and therefore be more meaningful. Also consider whether the objective needs to be done in collaboration with other people to be most effective.

Link with existing action plans

Refer to school or service local EDI actions or action plans for external validation such as, Atena Swann or the Race Equality Charter , if appropriate.

Monitor effectiveness

As with all objectives , wherever possible make EDI objectives SMART (Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant, and Time-bound) and get some feedback so that you can effectively measure progress.

Ask for support

You may need support or advice when changing the way, you operate. See EDI resources on the website or speak to the EDI lead in your school or service.

For resources and information about EDI see the EDI and Me section of the Loughborough University website.

Guidance for reviewers

Assess stage of EDI development

Together with the reviewee, assess their stage of EDI development and whether they would benefit from awareness raising activity as a development objective before setting a performance objective.

Be creative, development objectives could include watching a film or reading a book as well as participating in a focussed discussion or participating  in workshops, seminars, or online courses that enhance understanding of EDI. Development activity is particularly appropriate for those in the ‘comfort zone’. See model below.



Behaviours and Attitudes

Comfort Zone

Reluctant and avoidant e.g., EDI is considered extra work that should be left to the experts. EDI is perceived not to be relevant to the person’s role or subject.

Learning Zone

Curious and tentative e.g., EDI is interesting and there is acceptance that it is important, but it feels overwhelming and deskilling as there is so much to learn. There is an anxiety about getting things wrong or offending someone.

Growth Zone

Confident and engaged e.g., Conversations and self-directed learning about EDI have started there is full acceptance that it is relevant to all areas of activity.


Committed e.g. There is a commitment to lifelong learning in this area. Discriminatory practices (personal, professional, organisational and social) are regularly identified and challenged intersectional links are being made across  protected characteristics and marginalised groups.

Reward and recognition

Recognize and reward individuals or teams that demonstrate exceptional commitment to diversity and inclusion.


Encourage reviewees to access support from peers, sponsors or Mentors.