Kiana McFadden Is The 2024 DPS-NSBP Speaker Awardee

Within the partnership between The Division for Planetary Sciences (DPS) of the American Astronomical Society (AAS) and the National Society of Black Physicists (NSBP), Earth and Planetary Systems Sciences (EPSS) section, we recognize Kiana McFadden as the newest DPS-NSBP Speaker Awardee. Kiana is a PhD student in planetary science at the University of Arizona, specializing in the study of small body surfaces. She is currently working with Dr. Amy Mainzer for the study of mainbelt asteroids, using images acquired by the Near-Earth Object Wide-Field Infrared Survey Explorer (NEOWISE) and Wide-Field Infrared Survey Explorer (WISE) space telescopes.

Kiana McFadden’s award-winning talk at the NSBP Fall 2023 meeting, entitled “Size and Albedo Constraints for (152830) Dinkinesh Using WISE Data,” described work that was critical for helping the NASA Lucy mission plan their November 2023 encounter with this small main-belt asteroid (as described here).

The DPS partnership with NSBP was established to jointly represent the interests of planetary
scientists and students who identify as members of communities that are critically underrepresented
in this discipline. This partnership is part of a broader effort by the DPS to facilitate the involvement
and participation of more students/scientists belonging to racial/ethnic groups that have been
historically underrepresented in the planetary science discipline.

More information on the structure of this partnership can be found here: https://dps.aas.org/leadership/nsbp_parnership and donations supporting associated travel grants can be submitted here: https://dps.aas.org/Inclusivity/support-underrepresented-minority-communities-planetary-science.

Within this DPS-NSBP partnership, the top early career EPSS speaker is selected by the NSBP EPSS
chairs, based on their presentation at the annual NSBP meeting, as the DPS-NSBP Speaker awardee.
This Speaker is invited by DPS to speak at the following year’s DPS meeting, with expenses covered
by the DPS. Furthermore, the NSBP EPSS Chairs and the DPS Committee facilitate invitation of the
Speaker to an academic seminar at an HBCU, NASA center, national laboratory, or large planetary
science university program or research institute, in the same calendar year.

DPS is thrilled to invite Kiana McFadden to speak at the 2024 DPS meeting, which will be held in
Boise, Idaho, USA and virtually. Additionally, Kiana McFadden will be speaking at the
Southwest Research Institute (SwRI), in Boulder, colloquium series this fall.

Contacts:
Dr. Carol Raymond, DPS Chair, [email protected]
Dr. Serina Diniega, DPS committee member, [email protected]
Dr. Theodore Kareta, DPS Press Officer, [email protected]
More information about DPS: https://dps.aas.org/
More information about the DPS 2024 meeting: https://dps.aas.org/meetings/future
More information about NSBP: https://nsbp.org/
Kiana McFadden’s professional website: https://www.lpl.arizona.edu/graduate/students/kiana-mcfadden

The Division for Planetary Sciences (DPS), founded in 1968, is the largest special-interest Division
of the American Astronomical Society (AAS). Members of the DPS study the bodies of our own
solar system, from planets and moons to comets and asteroids, and all other solar-system objects and
processes. With the discovery that planets exist around other stars, the DPS has expanded its scope to
include the study of extrasolar planetary systems as well.
The American Astronomical Society (AAS), established in 1899, is the major organization of
professional astronomers in North America. The mission of the AAS is to enhance and share
humanity’s scientific understanding of the universe as a diverse and inclusive astronomical
community, which it achieves through publishing, meeting organization, science advocacy, education
and outreach, and training and professional development.

Partnership Between the DPS and the National Society of Black Physicists

DPS seeks to facilitate the involvement and participation in planetary science of more students/scientists belonging to racial/ethnic groups that have been historically underrepresented in the planetary science discipline. A workforce survey initiated by the DPS (Hendrix & Rathbun 2021) has clearly quantified the degree of underrepresentation, with African American/Black, Indigenous, and LatinX/Hispanic scientists and students being most impacted. While Rivera-Valentín et al. (2021) have shown that there is some very modest growth in the numbers of LatinX/Hispanic and Indigenous planetary scientists, this analysis revealed no appreciable increase in the numbers of African American/Black planetary scientists over nearly the last two decades, and all of these groups remain critically underrepresented in planetary science.

To attempt to improve representation in planetary science, DPS has created a new fund to support attendance of scientific meetings for DPS members who are also members of Black/African American, Indigenous, and/or Latinx communities. In addition, DPS seeks strategic partnership with professional organizations that represent the interests of planetary scientists and students who identify as members of communities that are critically underrepresented in this discipline, as outlined above. The first such partnership was established in 2021 with the National Society of Black Physicists (NSBP), Earth and Planetary Systems Sciences (EPSS) section, with this memo outlining the structure of this partnership.

A key part of the DPS-NSBP partnership was creation of the Joint DPS-NSBP speaker recognition program, which is described in this memo. At the annual NSBP meeting, the top early career or student EPSS speaker is selected by the NSBP EPSS chairs as the DPS-NSBP Speaker awardee. This Speaker is invited by DPS to speak at the following year’s DPS meeting, with expenses covered by DPS. Furthermore, the NSBP EPSS Chairs and the DPS Committee facilitate invitation of the Speaker to an academic seminar at an HBCU, NASA center, national laboratory, or large planetary science university program or research institute, over the next year.

DPS-NSBP Speakers 

Resources

Partnership Between the DPS and the National Society of Black Physicists

DPS seeks to facilitate the involvement and participation in planetary science of more students/scientists belonging to racial/ethnic groups that have been historically underrepresented in the planetary science discipline. A workforce survey initiated by the DPS (Hendrix & Rathbun 2021) has clearly quantified the degree of underrepresentation, with African American/Black, Indigenous, and LatinX/Hispanic scientists and students being most impacted. While Rivera-Valentín et al. (2021) have shown that there is some very modest growth in the numbers of LatinX/Hispanic and Indigenous planetary scientists, this analysis revealed no appreciable increase in the numbers of African American/Black planetary scientists over nearly the last two decades, and all of these groups remain critically underrepresented in planetary science.

To attempt to improve representation in planetary science, DPS has created a new fund to support attendance of scientific meetings for DPS members who are also members of Black/African American, Indigenous, and/or Latinx communities. In addition, DPS seeks strategic partnership with professional organizations that represent the interests of planetary scientists and students who identify as members of communities that are critically underrepresented in this discipline, as outlined above. The first such partnership was established in 2021 with the National Society of Black Physicists (NSBP), Earth and Planetary Systems Sciences (EPSS) section, with this memo outlining the structure of this partnership.

A key part of the DPS-NSBP partnership was creation of the Joint DPS-NSBP speaker recognition program, which is described in this memo. At the annual NSBP meeting, the top early career or student EPSS speaker is selected by the NSBP EPSS chairs as the DPS-NSBP Speaker awardee. This Speaker is invited by DPS to speak at the following year’s DPS meeting, with expenses covered by DPS. Furthermore, the NSBP EPSS Chairs and the DPS Committee facilitate invitation of the Speaker to an academic seminar at an HBCU, NASA center, national laboratory, or large planetary science university program or research institute, over the next year.

 

DPS-NSBP Speakers 

 

Resources

 

 

2020 Professional Culture & Climate Subcommittee Sponsored Talk

K. Renee Horton’s talk on supporting underrepresented minorities: “Don’t Silence Our Voice at the Table”, from the 2020 DPS meeting.

 

Fund to Support Underrepresented Minority Communities in Planetary Science

The DPS has created a new fund to support underrepresented minority communities in planetary science. Funds from this account will be used to build partnerships between the DPS and national organizations, such as the National Society of Black Physicists (NSBP), and to enhance participation of underrepresented minority scientists at the annual DPS conference. The DPS Committee will work with our new partners to determine how the money will be distributed. The fund has been seeded by an initial contribution of $10,000 from DPS funds, and was augmented with additional DPS funds to bring the total to ~$100,000. Contributions are most welcome at this link.

Apply

Applications for the fund can be found at the Travel Grant Application Form.

Donate

Outside donations to the Fund to Support Underrepresented Minority Communities in Planetary Science are welcome and appreciated. AAS members can contribute directly via the AAS donation Web pages:

  1. Follow this link and log into your AAS account if not already
  2. If you lose your place after logging in, return to the contributions page by clicking the DONATE tab near the top of the screen
  3. Click the DPS tab and enter amount under “Fund to Support Underrepresented Minority Communities in Planetary Science”
  4. Click the “Add to Cart” button in the bottom right hand corner
  5. Click “Cart” in the uppermost left hand corner to check out and follow instructions for payment

The AAS will handle the details including acknowledging your contribution for tax purposes. All donations are tax deductible.

You also can contribute to the Fund to Support Underrepresented Minority Communities in Planetary Science by sending a check made out to the American Astronomical Society to:

American Astronomical Society
1667 K Street NW, Suite 800
Washington, DC 20006

Please note in the memo line of your check that your contribution is to go to the Fund to Support Underrepresented Minority Communities in Planetary Science so that it is credited to the correct account.

Actionable Steps to Make our Community More Equitable

Suggestions to ways members of our community can help make things more equitable right now (a living list):

There have been many resources for folks to help with current events, see, for example, https://docs.google.com/document/d/1tL9_huJWJ_iekHzK5PShI00u-C25w0jrExhpJpuNHII/edithttps://www.naiabutlercraig.com/post/sorry-i-can-t-just-focus-on-the-sciencehttps://www.feministpress.org/news/black-lives-matter-reading-list?  and, for places to donate https://linktr.ee/showupnow.  We also suggest using Google to find local resources, such as Black-owned businesses to support.

Here, we want to make suggestions for members of the planetary science community to make planetary science a more equitable environment
 

• Listen!  Learn about issues affecting members of our community who are also members of underrepresented groups.  This means research!  Google is your friend!

• PCCS reading list: pccs-reading-list

• Diversity talks from DPS meetings: leadership/climate

• Astronomy in Color blog: http://astronomyincolor.blogspot.com

• Women in Planetary Science blog, particularly the one about effects on the decadal survey: https://womeninplanetaryscience.wordpress.com

• Follow scientists of color on twitter.

• Encourage governing bodies to postpone upcoming deadlines.

• Request NASA to extend upcoming deadlines, particularly ROSES, in order to give people space to deal with the current civil unrest

• Request NASA to extend late June and July deadlines to give scientists time to prioritize decadal survey white papers

• If the decadal survey deadline cannot be delayed, NAS/NASA/the decadal co-chairs need to come up with other ways to ensure voices of our marginalized colleagues are heard.

• If you are the supervisor of a scientist of color, particularly for BIPOC, give them space.  Send a message telling them that if they miss deadlines, meetings, etc, that it is NOT a problem.  Tell them that they are important and their needs come first.  Offer help.  DON’T call and ask how they’re doing.  They’re likely not doing well and they don’t need to go over it all with you.  They may not even respond to your message.  And that’s ok, this isn’t about you

• Let your colleagues of color, particularly African-American colleagues, at your workplace be what they came there to be: scientists.  Ask us if they would like to be involved in new diversity agenda items rather than assuming that they have time.  Realize that in addition with all that comes with being a scientist by profession, they are also more likely to be overburdened with uncompensated mentoring and dealing with the current events.  Don’t assume that African-American (or other minority) scientists (including those that are early career) have loads of free time.

• Speak up when colleagues make statements that are incorrect.  Don’t wait for our marginalized colleagues to speak up.  For example, when folks say they don’t see color or when someone says that “if individuals really care they will make time”, step in and point out what is wrong with those ideas.  If you don’t know, go to step 1.

• Know (or learn) how to pronounce your colleagues names.  If you’re chairing a session or otherwise introducing a speaker, ask them privately beforehand to make sure you are pronouncing it correctly.

• Be aware of your own implicit biases. See https://implicit.harvard.edu/implicit/

• Amplify voices of scientists that are least likely to be heard

• Be aware of your social capital and use it to help members of URM groups

• Fill out surveys after meetings, include positive & negative comments

• Bring considerations of diversity, equity, and inclusion into all aspects of doing science.

• Think along multiple axes: race, gender, LGBTQ+ status, ability status…

• Learn how to apologize [13].  Mistakes WILL happen.

• Pay attention to whom you work with.  Who is missing from your collaborations? What can you do to fill those gaps and engage with different people?

• Fill out demographic information when asked by, for example, DPS or nspires

• Ask people at periphery of your network for new networking opportunities

• Ensure that diversity efforts don’t fall into the arena of “colorless diversity”: efforts that focus solely on gender, ability, etc. are often ineffective at including members of racial and ethnic minority groups

• Encourage your organizations to have explicit, well-defined expectations and criteria for hiring, admission, etc.

• Encourage your organizations to have clear anti-harassment policies that explicitly include policies about racial harassment.  Use training that works.  Sanction perpetrators.  Protect members of marginalized groups.
 

Note that most of the above list comes from publications by Julie Rathbun, Lynnae Quick, Serina Diniega, and Kennda Lynch (see, for example https://www.hou.usra.edu/meetings/lpsc2020/eposter/1594.pdf).

2020 Planetary Workforce Survey

The final report from the 2020 DPS Membership Survey, which also serves as the 2020 Planetary Workforce Survey sponsored by the DPS, is now available. 

The raw version of the 2020 DPS Membership Survey questionnaire is here.

Links to full results:

Links to preliminary results:

Results from past membership surveys can be found here.

 

Last updated: 22 Dec 2020

DPS PCCS Reading List

Statement of Purpose:

The DPS is committed to improving our culture through understanding barriers faced by underrepresented members of our community (see leadership/climate).This list consists of some prompts for thought about how we interact with each other within our community via individual actions and group/system organization. In particular, this list focuses on identifying issues and obstacles that are created due to assumptions about who naturally seems to belong. This is usually unintentional, but still has real effects. Additionally, this list focuses on identifying potential mechanisms for combating these assumptions and the systems that enforce societal-level biases and “traditional” power dynamics. The listed articles and such were selected to present different perspectives that could prompt self- and group-reflection. DPS and the PCCS strongly encourage such reflection, especially those discussions that lead to healthy and helpful changes in how an individual or group conducts themselves or participates within a given group/system. 

Many of the articles linked are focused specifically on interactions within the academic (and often science) communities. Some are broader in focus but are just as applicable, as our community exists within the larger world, and many issues that affect scientists spill over from societal issues. We note that some articles may be out of date; the list is updated on an ongoing best-effort basis. Please send suggestions to be included to [email protected]

Beyond selection for inclusion within this list, DPS and PCCS does not endorse any specific author, issue identification, or potential mitigation technique. After all, the issues under discussion have a long history and myriad reasons for persisting — and it will take many and different types of efforts to effect a cultural change. It is also important to remember that personal change towards improved and more inclusive interactions is a journey, not a destination. Being informed is the first and very important step — as scientists, we all understand the importance of challenging our assumptions and doing the research.

Wherever possible, we have noted where links may lead to articles that require subscriptions (or provide a limited number of free articles/month).

Topics: 

 

The Case for Diversity

NCAR/UCAR case for diversity – includes links and background on why diversity matters

https://www.ucar.edu/sites/default/files/documents/related-links/2018-05/The%20Case%20for%20D%26I_Final.pdf

 

Some general diversity in astronomy links

https://kevinflaherty.weebly.com/diversity.html

 

Pronouns on conference badges: why are they important?

https://www.mypronouns.org/what-and-why

https://shcs.ucdavis.edu/blog/archive/why-pronouns-are-important

 

Dialogue and Society

How to get beyond our tribal politics, by Jonathan Haidt

https://newsstand.google.com/articles/CAIiEDvXHlIHvke-6C_IMSfAdIUqGAgEKg8IACoHCAow1tzJATDnyxUwiK20AQ

 

Being Liberal (or Conservative) Is Not an Accomplishment: On the Comfort of Political Polarization, by David Barr

http://www.forthesakeofarguments.com/blog/being-liberal-or-conservative-is-not-an-accomplishment-on-the-comfort-of-political-polarization

 

Teaching Humility in an Age of Arrogance, by Michael Patrick Lynch

“[I]f we want to live in a tolerant society where we are not only open-minded but willing to learn from others, we need to balance humility and conviction.”

https://www.chronicle.com/article/Teaching-Humility-in-an-Age-of/240266

 

TED Talk:  I grew up in the Westboro Baptist Church. Here’s why I left, by Megan Phelps-Roper

“I can’t help but see in our public discourse so many of the same destructive impulses that ruled my former church.”

https://www.ted.com/talks/megan_phelps_roper_i_grew_up_in_the_westboro_baptist_church_here_s_why_i_left/transcript?language=en

 

The Seven Habits of Highly Depolarizing People, by David Blankenhorn

https://www.the-american-interest.com/2016/02/17/the-seven-habits-of-highly-depolarizing-people/

 

Race in the United States

Podcast: Bryan Stevenson on the Ezra Klein Show, on the general topic of racial injustice in the U.S. and the importance of changing our narrative. 

https://www.stitcher.com/podcast/vox/the-ezra-klein-show/e/57925660

 

I, Racist by John Metta

https://www.huffingtonpost.com/john-metta/i-racist_b_7770652.html

 

White Privilege: Unpacking the Invisible Knapsack and Some Notes for Facilitators 

https://nationalseedproject.org/white-privilege-unpacking-the-invisible-knapsack

 

I’m the descendant of a founding father and I have two black daughters — and I am racist, by Phil Lee (Washington Post, limited free articles/month)

https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/post-nation/wp/2017/11/03/im-the-descendant-of-a-founding-father-and-i-have-two-black-daughters-and-i-am-racist/?noredirect=on&utm_term=.65e53d3afa14 

 

Lack of Racial Diversity in geoscience: (includes non-paywalled link to Nature Geoscience article about this data from 2018)

https://www.rachel-bernard.com/diversity/

 

Fourteen Examples of Systemic Racism in the US Criminal Justice System, by Bill Quigley

https://www.commondreams.org/views/2010/07/26/fourteen-examples-systemic-racism-us-criminal-justice-system

 

Donald Trump: The first white president, by Ta-Nehisi Coates

https://www.theatlantic.com/magazine/archive/2017/10/the-first-white-president-ta-nehisi-coates/537909/

 

That was no typo: The median net worth of black Bostonians really is $8, by Akilah Johnson, Boston Globe

https://www.bostonglobe.com/metro/2017/12/11/that-was-typo-the-median-net-worth-black-bostonians-really/ze5kxC1jJelx24M3pugFFN/story.html 
 

A Conversation With Native Americans on Race, by By Michéle Stephenson and Brian Young, New York Times Op-Docs

https://www.nytimes.com/2017/08/15/opinion/a-conversation-with-native-americans-on-race.html 

 

An interesting perspective on racial/ethnic diversity in the geosciences related to different experiences with the outdoors in childhood.

https://blogs.scientificamerican.com/voices/why-dont-the-geosciences-have-more-diversity/?sf194372288=1

 

Bad things happen in the woods 

https://amp.theguardian.com/environment/2018/jul/13/hiking-african-american-racism-nature

 

Sexual Harassment and Gender Discrimination

“Why did she wait until now to come forward?” people say.  This author spoke up against her harasser, and the price she paid is an answer to that question. (Paywall.)

https://www.chronicle.com/article/i-spoke-up-against-my-harasser/241991

 

The Unforgiving Minute, by Laurie Penny

https://longreads.com/2017/11/07/the-unforgiving-minute/amp/

 

‘Quiet Desperation’ of Academic Women, by Scott Jaschik, Inside Higher Ed

https://www.insidehighered.com/news/2008/06/12/quiet-desperation-academic-women

 

Comic: Has gender equity gone too far?, by gfyffe

https://imgur.com/gallery/O4FSJ

 

Gender, Conversation Dominance, and Listener Bias:

http://womeninastronomy.blogspot.com/2014/07/stop-interrupting-me-gender.html 

 

Gender inequity in speaking opportunities at the American Geophysical Union Fall Meeting: (open access article)  

https://www.nature.com/articles/s41467-018-03809-5 

 

Transgender students in higher education:

https://williamsinstitute.law.ucla.edu/wp-content/uploads/1808-Trans-Higher-Ed.pdf

 

Transgender Guide to Transitioning and Gender Affirmation in the workplace, example from Cornell University:

https://diversity.cornell.edu/sites/default/files/uploaded-files/A%20Transgender%20Guide%20to%20Transitioning%20%26%20Gender%20Affirmation%20in%20the%20Workplace_3.pdf
 

Trauma-Informed Approach: Understanding Trauma and its Implications

https://marketproject.org/wordpress/wp-content/uploads/2018/03/TMP-Trauma-Informed-Policy.pdf

 

The Importance of Considering Power Dynamics (alternatively: examples of things that we all generally agree shouldn’t happen but do, sometimes way too often)

Professional Disagreement Over Galaxies Escalates Into Bullying And Harassment, Ethan Siegel, Contributor for Forbes

https://www.forbes.com/sites/startswithabang/2017/11/10/professional-disagreement-over-galaxies-escalates-into-bullying-and-harassment/#1a7a8b470fa7

 

He Fell In Love With His Grad Student — Then Fired Her For It

https://www.buzzfeednews.com/article/azeenghorayshi/ott-harassment-investigation#.dfmLJMrQy

 

Famous Berkeley Astronomer Violated Sexual Harassment Policies Over Many Years

https://www.buzzfeednews.com/article/azeenghorayshi/famous-astronomer-allegedly-sexually-harassed-students

 

“Congrats, you have an all male panel!” – Tumblr with many examples of all-male panels (i.e., don’t have your event be on this list!)

http://allmalepanels.tumblr.com/

 

Bringing Recognition to Underrepresented Science Contributors

100 Women: The scientists championing their indigenous ancestors’ discoveries, by Mary Halton, BBC

http://www.bbc.com/news/science-environment-41887971

 

Why we’re adding Black Mathematician Month to our calendars, by Sean Jamshidi, Nikoleta Kalaydzhieva and Rafael Prieto Curiel, contributors to maths magazine Chalkdust and PhD candidates at University College London

https://www.theguardian.com/science/blog/2017/oct/02/why-were-adding-black-mathematician-month-to-our-calendars

 

Nicole E. Cabrera Salazar discusses diversity in STEM fields, by Swapna Krishna

http://www.syfy.com/syfywire/nicole-e-cabrera-salazar-discusses-diversity-in-stem-fields?amp

 

Considerations for Effective Allies

I am drowning in whiteness, by Ijeoma Oluo

http://kuow.org/post/ijeoma-oluo-i-am-drowning-whiteness

 

Without inclusion, diversity initiatives may not be enough, Chandler Puritty et al., Science, 15 Sep 2017: Vol. 357, Issue 6356, pp. 1101-1102 DOI: 10.1126/science.aai9054. (Article requires subscription)

http://science.sciencemag.org/content/357/6356/1101.full

 

Understanding and Promoting Diversity and Inclusion in Physics, by Geraldine L. Cochran, PhD, Dean of the Douglass Project for Rutgers Women in Math, Science, & Engineering, Rutgers 

https://www.spsnational.org/the-sps-observer/winter/2017/understanding-and-promoting-diversity-and-inclusion-physics 

 

How Women Mentors Make a Difference in Engineering, by Ed Yong, The Atlantic, May 22, 2017

https://www.theatlantic.com/science/archive/2017/05/women-mentors-engineering/527625/?utm_source=atlfb

 

Building an inclusive AAS:

https://arxiv.org/pdf/1610.02916.pdf 

 

Using implicit bias training to improve conditions for women in STEM

http://sci-hub.tw/https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007/s11218-014-9259-5

 

Issues within Planetary Science

Double jeopardy in astronomy and planetary science: Women of color face greater risks of gendered and racial harassment, by Clancy, Lee, Rodgers, and Richey (Free access)

http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1002/2017JE005256/abstract;jsessionid=D6164A7F840A60C6AD14255BE3900944.f02t04 

 

Participation of women in spacecraft science teams, by Julie Rathbun

http://facweb1.redlands.edu/fac/Julie_Rathbun/women_spacecraft_nature.pdf

 

Planetary Science Workforce Survey

http://lasp.colorado.edu/home/mop/resources/planetary-science-workforce-survey/ 

 

The “d” word by Janet Vertesi, presented to SBAG and OPAG

https://www.lpi.usra.edu/sbag/meetings/jun2017/presentations/Vertesi.pdf

 

For further reading: Decolonising Science Reading List

https://medium.com/@chanda/decolonising-science-reading-list-339fb773d51f 

 

Comic: You should’ve asked, by Emma

https://english.emmaclit.com/2017/05/20/you-shouldve-asked/

 

Issues Facing Disabled Scientists

It’s time to stop excluding people with disabilities from science.

https://massivesci.com/articles/disability-science-career-stem-field/

 

Attending EGU in a wheelchair  

http://blog.rtwilson.com/attending-egu-in-a-wheelchair/

 

Our disabilities have made us better scientists

https://blogs.scientificamerican.com/voices/our-disabilities-have-made-us-better-scientists/

 

Creating spaces for geoscientists with disabilities to thrive

https://eos.org/opinions/creating-spaces-for-geoscientists-with-disabilities-to-thrive

 

Last reviewed by the PCCS committee, March 2020

Charge to the Professional Culture and Climate Subcommittee

Purpose:  To work towards making the community of planetary scientists an environment in which professional merit is the only criterion that determines each person’s success. 

Mission: To consider and recommend actions that the DPS Committee can take to promote a broadly inclusive professional community characterized by respect, honesty, and trust, so that people of diverse backgrounds are – and perceive themselves to be – safe, welcome and enabled.

Rationale:

  1. What need does the Subcommittee fulfill?  In order to optimize the scientific productivity of our professional community, the DPS leadership asks a Subcommittee to convene with purpose and mission as stated above.
  2. How is the Subcommittee’s work important to the Division?  The activities of the Subcommittee will create an awareness of our community’s norms and values and of the work that remains to be done to live up to them. As advised by the Subcommittee, the DPS Committee will take action from time to time to mitigate factors other than professional merit that prevent members from being successful.
  3. How does this work align with the purpose of the Division and what will be its long-term impact? The outcome of the Subcommittee’s efforts will enhance the performance of the Division by making it more inclusive and by encouraging participation and engagement of members with a wide diversity of backgrounds and perspectives.   This will ultimately result in greater success in our investigations of the solar system and other planetary systems.

Time frame:  The Subcommittee will serve at the request of the DPS Committee, with the Subcommittee chairs serving a two-year term.

Tasks: To be reviewed and modified as needed each year with the DPS Committee and leadership.  Examples include:

  • Promote community values and cultural norms through division communications throughout the year and at the annual meeting.
  • Recommend mechanisms for training opportunities pertaining to diversity and inclusion for the DPS leadership and DPS membership.
  • Work with AAS staff and DPS Committee to meet Subcommittee’s goals. Assess results of DPS meeting exit survey for questions related to professional climate and culture at our annual professional meetings.
  • Recommend to the DPS meeting Scientific Organizing Committee a speaker on a topic of interest and relevance to DPS members related to professional culture and climate.
  • Request funds with justification from the DPS annual budget to meet the Subcommittee’s goals.

Communication/Sharing of Results: The Subcommittee shall report to the DPS committee no less than twice annually: once at the Washington DC Committee meeting, usually in spring (May) of each year, and again at the annual meeting in the fall.  The Subcommittee is encouraged to share information with the general membership through the DPS newsletter, the DPS web site, and the Division’s social media channels. The Subcommittee chairs will maintain communications throughout the year with DPS leadership by requesting time on the DPS Committee telecon agenda and via open communications with DPS chair.

Subcommittee membership:

  • How large is the subcommittee and why?  Between 7-10 members, to seek representation from a broad cross-section of the DPS membership.
  • Who can serve on the Subcommittee? Any active DPS member.
  • How is membership determined? Nominations (including self-nominations) are sought annually, and the Co-Chairs select membership with the goal of achieving broad representation from the DPS community.  The final membership list will be approved by the DPS Committee.
  • What is the term of service on the subcommittee?  Two years, with the option of renewing for a single additional term.
  • If a member cannot serve her/his full term how can members be replaced?  Co-Chairs may designate replacements from people on a waiting list or from suggestions within the Subcommittee.