Diversity and Inclusion Committee Terms of Reference

Committee on Diversity and Inclusion

Terms of Reference

Chair: Eric Archer

The Society for Marine Mammalogy (SMM) recognizes that preserving diversity in the wild is critical to the sustainability of healthy ecosystems. Likewise, promoting the diversity of our scientists makes for a healthier scientific society. By encompassing a wide range of experiences and viewpoints and making our science relevant and easily available, we enhance the connection between our research and the communities and cultures in which we work. Therefore the SMM is dedicated to enhancing diversity in its membership, leadership, and readership. The society recognizes that the field of marine mammal science is only strengthened by the participation of people representing all ages, career stages and professional status, races, national, cultural, and socio-economic backgrounds, genders, gender identities, sexual orientations, and physical abilities.

The Diversity Committee will work to help achieve these goals by identifying ways the society can widen the pipeline that brings new scientists into the field to make it more inclusive, and help them advance in their career goals. It will also strive to enhance outreach and publicity of research and issues in the field. In particular, it will focus on the following areas:

Monitoring the demographics of the society and how they change over time. This will allow us to evaluate the effectiveness of society efforts and target areas of improvement.

Exposing under-represented groups to the field of marine mammalogy. Creating awareness of the field to a wider array of future scientists helps break some of the socio-economic barriers to entry. Ensuring that our research is easily available to non-scientists and communities outside the field makes the science more relevant to daily life, enhances local engagement, and strengthens bases of support.

Mentoring students and early career scientists. The society can leverage its corporate knowledge to help guide and support students that may lack other resources.

Engaging a global community of scientists by communicating opportunities the Society provides and promoting collaborations across those communities.