School of Life Sciences

School Support Network

Dignity and Respect at work

Our staff, students and visitors have every right to be treated with dignity and respect. Sadly, we sometimes fall short of this expectation. We all feel strongly on certain issues, but it is important in this case that we look for an appropriate route to resolve issues that arise (in a meeting this should be via the Chair), and are able to separate the issue itself from our feelings and behaviour.

We all need to work hard to make sure that we treat others in the way in which we ourselves would like to be treated. This is especially important for academics when dealing with more junior colleagues, professional services colleagues, and at meetings where students and/or visitors are present. Students in particular look to us as role models for our behaviour. We should all feel empowered to challenge any behaviour that falls below our standard, and you have the School’s full support in doing so.

If you are uncomfortable about any situation, there are a variety of steps you can take:

School Support Network

We have a network of trained staff who can provide advice, support and guidance. Please feel free to contact anyone in the network you do not have to follow any particular reporting route and can confidentially talk to any of us:

WendyWendy Brown

Professor of Physical Chemistry 

Subject Chair for Chemistry


Kate FennellKate Fennell

Doctoral Tutor (Neuroscience)



Sarah Guthrie portraitSarah Guthrie

Professor of Developmental Neuroscience 

Head of School


Kate Hampden Smith

Kate Hampden-Smith

Laboratory Technician



Dr ManciniErika Mancini

Reader in Biomedical Structural Biology

Director of Postdoctoral Development


MiguelMiguel Maravall

Professor of Neuroscience

Equality, Diversity and Inclusion co-lead


Trudy MyersTrudy Myers

Sussex Drug Discovery Coordinator


Louise Newnham Louise Newnham

Teaching Fellow in Genome Stability


Tony Oliver LGBT Scientists LogoAntony Oliver

Senior Research Fellow (Genome Damage and Stability)



Mark PagetMark Paget

Reader in Molecular Genetics

Deputy Head of School (Education)



Steve PearceSteve Pearce

Technical and Administrative Supervisor



Frances PearlFrances Pearl

Bioinformatics Academic Research Manager (Biochemistry)

Director of Doctoral Studies


Zahid PranjolZahid Pranjol

Lecturer in Biomedical Sciences

Director of Student Experience


Louise SerpellLouise Serpell

Professor of Biochemistry



University Dignity Champions

Dignity Champions provide confidential and informal advice to those who feel they are experiencing difficult working relationships, including bullying or harassment, or who have witnessed such behaviour. They are a group of trained individuals from across the University. They can listen, talk through the options available and, if appropriate, signpost to other sources of support and advice. For more information visit the website.

Employee Assistance Helpline

You can call the Employee Assistance helpline for completely confidential advice and support. For more information, visit the HR website. You can call the 24/7 helpline on 0800 015 5630.

Talk to Spot

You might also like to log anything troubling you using this confidential website, which is independent of the University and will give you a timestamped copy and the option to email it anonymously. Visit the TalktoSpot website.

Raising a complaint

We want to resolve issues as quickly and informally as possible to ensure that staff can work together effectively, but you might also like to log a more formal complaint:

The staff grievance procedure is here.

Students have a separate procedure, but should also talk to the Deputy Head of Life Sciences (Education) in the first instance.