Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion

We are a collaborative group of scientists and engineers committed to fostering diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI). The best science comes from a positive, inclusive, and diverse environment.  We welcome people of all backgrounds. The following is our pledge to contribute to an inclusive community and culture. 

How we foster an inclusive environment

    • We recruit with diversity in mind. Our science is diverse and multidisciplinary, so our team should be as well. We welcome individuals from many educational backgrounds (including bioinformatics, computer science, biology and chemistry), job histories (academia, industry, and new graduates), as well as people who don’t fall neatly into any single group. We prioritize curiosity, creativity and tenacity over checking specific boxes on a resume. We also recognize that gender and racial biases exist in our scientific institutions, and we actively seek to counteract those biases.
    • We value diversity in our speakers. Ever attend a panel discussion that feels like an echo chamber? Yeah, we don’t like that either. We like hearing from people who will expand our horizons and challenge our ideas. So we invite speakers from a broad array of backgrounds, in terms of both topics and demographics.
    • We work in the open. We often cite the FAIR principles in our work, so perhaps it’s not surprising that we value open science and open data. Whenever possible, our projects are developed using open source licensing where anyone can use and adapt our work, and the data we generate is released via a CC0 waiver (for many theoretical and practical reasons). 
    • We collaborate with each other. We don’t like working alone. Most of our projects combine the skills and talents of multiple people (and often multiple labs), and science we do and the tools we create are better as a result. We pride ourselves on maintaining a respectful environment in which “I don’t know” is a starting point for learning and not a sign of weakness, and where we all continually learn from each other.
    • We care about your future. We want to know how you define personal and professional success, and whatever that may be, we want to help you achieve it. That means we devote lab meetings to career development topics, including grant writing, CV building, alumni panels, and code improvement. We’re supportive of professional development opportunities such as conferences, formal and informal presentations, and courses. And if your aspirations eventually lead you out of the lab, we’ll gladly provide advice, guidance, and networking contacts to help you take the next step in your career.
    • We believe in a fun work environment. Sure the data-munging can be awful, but at least your coworkers are not. We have regular social events organized by our lab social committee (with a yearly budget!). These activities are completely optional, of course, so attend as many or as few as you like.
    • We encourage discussion. Discussions on ethics and justice can be awkward, uncomfortable conversations to have, but we don’t shy away from them. For example, the Black Lives Matter movement led to several discussions on how we can better support Black scientists, and we think that our lab and our institute are much better as a result.

Code of Conduct: What We Expect

We love our group dynamic. We have been grateful and lucky that current and past lab members have seemed to intuitively understand what it means to maintain a respectful and welcoming environment.  Having said that, it’s time we made these expectations more explicit in this Code of Conduct.

  • We try to maintain a harassment-free experience for everyone, regardless of age, body size, visible or invisible disability, ethnicity, sex characteristics, gender identity and expression, level of experience, education, socio-economic status, nationality, personal appearance, race, religion, or sexual identity and orientation.  We expect all conduct to support this goal of creating an open, welcoming, and inclusive community.
  • Harassment of any kind is not tolerated. If you feel you or another is experiencing harassment at any time, be it in our group or within the Scripps Research Institute at large, please inform Andrew, Human Resources, and/or the Scripps Research ombudsman. 
  • Everyone’s perspective is valuable and should be listened to equally and respectfully. Discussions are encouraged, so long as they adhere to considerate language. 
  • Err on the side of positivity, especially in electronic communications where intent can be difficult to convey/interpret.  Overly negative and/or personal attacks should be avoided.
  • We expect ethical conduct in all aspects of our lab’s activities, and we all share responsibility for raising any issues for discussion. If you witness unethical behavior of any form, let us know. 
  • We value collaboration over competition, both within the lab and with external colleagues. In the context of collaboration, we expect everyone to openly and generously credit all individuals who contribute to a project.

This list is certainly not exhaustive. If you think of something that should be explicitly stated, let Andrew know.