Societies Consortium on Sexual Harassment in STEMM Holds First All-Member Convening
Societies Consortium on Sexual Harassment in STEMM Holds First All-Member Convening

October 2019

On September 16, AERA participated in the first all-member convening of the Societies Consortium on Sexual Harassment in STEMM (science, technology, engineering, math, and medical fields). Launched in February 2019, the consortium, in which AERA plays a major leadership role, aims to advance full participation and excellence in STEMM and to prevent and respond to sexual and gender harassment in STEMM environments. The consortium develops resources and guidance to effectively address sexual harassment in the member societies’ own operations and more broadly in the fields they represent.

AERA Executive Director Felice J. Levine serves as co-chair of the consortium’s executive committee, along with Billy M. Williams, vice president of ethics, diversity, and inclusion at the American Geophysical Union.

Attending the convening were over 100 people, representing more than 80 of the Consortium’s 119 member societies at the time. The goal of the meeting was to elevate knowledge, provide resources, and facilitate strategies for how to build communities and bridges for collaboration in STEMM fields, how to effectively use Consortium resources and restorative actions, and how to actively embrace diversity and inclusion.

The meeting provided opportunities for members to share insights, resources, and concerns and to further develop an engaged consortium community whose members inform one another about lessons learned and effective practices. Attendees learned about the power of collective action while sharing concerns, ideas, and experience, and discussed the need for prioritizing enhanced member engagement opportunities throughout the coming year. Attendees also discussed the importance of data for prioritizing action and tracking progress.

The Consortium includes societies of many sizes, representing a wide range of natural and physical, behavioral and social sciences, engineering, mathematics, and medical disciplines, including societies focused on the interests of those targeted for bias in these fields.

Along with Levine and Williams, executive committee members Andrew Black and Shirley Malcom of the American Association for the Advancement of Science and Marc Beebe of the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers served as co-vice chairs, and David Acosta of the Association of American Medical Colleges and Shari Miles-Cohen of the American Psychological Association as co-community outreach and inclusion officers. A Leadership Council of eight societies and an Advisory Council of eight higher education and academic health leaders are informing the Consortium’s work to ensure that it has value to all members and impact on the field.

For more background, please see the AERA Highlights story from February 2019.

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