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This conference aims to create an inclusive, safe, welcoming, and comfortable environment for sharing research. It is now widely recognised that there are various structural barriers to participating in academia. This code sets out steps towards challenging these barriers.
Delegates vary by gender, race, class, career status, ability, caring responsibilities, and other factors that affect their participation. Please be aware of your privileges and give space to those whose voices are typically marginalised in academic discussions. For instance, men tend to ask more questions and speak for longer than women at conferences.1 To address this, all chairs have been asked to take the first question following a paper from a woman or gender nonconforming person where possible.
We will not tolerate discrimination (inclusive of, but not limited, to racism, sexism, homophobia, and transphobia). These subjects may arise in discussion of popular music and online cultures. For many delegates English will be a second language, so please phrase comments carefully, but also be considerate of language differences and take corrections with grace.
We will not tolerate bullying or bullish behaviour. Given the focus of the conference, many delegates are stakeholders in particular communities and cultures. When people share personal aspects of their research, please focus more on listening than providing critique.
We will not tolerate harassment. We ask that all discussions remain civil and all behaviour professional, even where delegates share common interests and communicate casually.
We encourage kindness and generosity in all interactions, especially the chat accompanying each Zoom room. Please focus on making constructive contributions: ‘honest’ or ‘blunt’ direct criticism of others’ work has rarely helped improve scholarship. Feel free to greet others, make connections, post memes (though consider quite how contextual humour may be), share knowledge, and link to resources. However, note that chairs and presenters will not be able to pay constant attention to chat. Zoom chat will not be independently moderated, so we trust that delegates will collectively build a considerate and inviting environment.
By registering for the conference, you agree to uphold these principles to the best of your ability. If you feel that anyone breaks this code of conduct, please report it to the conference committee. This will be kept confidential and we will do our best to resolve improper behaviour.
We look forward to welcoming you and engaging in enjoyable discussions.
This code of conduct is based on recommendations from the REACH Inclusive Conference Guide and draws from the code of behaviour for the Heavy Metal and Global Premodernity conference (with thanks to Jeremy J. Swist and Charlotte Naylor Davis).
1 Alecia J. Carter et al., ‘Women’s Visibility in Academic Seminars: Women Ask Fewer Questions than Men’, PLOS ONE 13, no. 9 (27 September 2018): e0202743, https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0202743; Amy Hinsley, William J. Sutherland, and Alison Johnston, ‘Men Ask More Questions than Women at a Scientific Conference’, PLOS ONE 12, no. 10 (16 October 2017): e0185534, https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0185534; Anna Lupon et al., ‘Towards Women-Inclusive Ecology: Representation, Behavior, and Perception of Women at an International Conference’, PLOS ONE 16, no. 12 (10 December 2021): e0260163, https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0260163; Jonathan Pritchard et al., ‘Asking Gender Questions’, Astronomy & Geophysics 55, no. 6 (1 December 2014): 6.8-6.12, https://doi.org/10.1093/astrogeo/atu245; Sarah J. Schmidt and James R. A. Davenport, ‘Who Asks Questions at Astronomy Meetings?’, Nature Astronomy 1, no. 6 (2 June 2017): 1–2, https://doi.org/10.1038/s41550-017-0153; Sarah J. Schmidt et al., ‘The Role of Gender in Asking Questions at Cool Stars 18 and 19’, ArXiv:1704.05260 [Astro-Ph, Physics:Physics], 18 April 2017, https://doi.org/10.5281/zenodo.546881.