Webinar: Preventing and reducing occurrences of sexual harassment and assault among field-based research disciplines

Apr 27, 2021, 4:00 pm
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Speaker: Carol E. Colaninno: Research assistant professor, Center for STEM Research, Education, & Outreach, Southern Illinois University Edwardsville

Research suggests that sexual harassment and assault frequently occur during field research and students, trainees, and early career professionals are more subjected to harassing behaviors compared to mid-career and senior scientists. In many field-based research disciplines, students, trainees, and early career professional are put in situations where harassment traditionally has been unchecked. Field sites can be remote and students may be required to live on site with fellow students, teaching assistants, and field directors in relative isolation. In 2020 our research team, with funding from the National Science Foundation, began conducting investigations to document practices that field directors implement to reduce and prevent harassment; to understand how directors and students perceive these practices; and to reimagine mechanisms that help improve field site research, learning, and living conditions to more fully benefit the well-being of students, trainee, and early career professionals. Although only in the initial phase of our research, we have identified several practices that may be modified to reduce and prevent conditions that have the potential to lead to sexual harassment and assault. I discuss and review these initial findings and detail our future research plans. 

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