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Diversity and inclusiveness in large scientific collaborations

Considerable progress has been made in the past decade to increase diversity in astronomy, and in particular to reach a ‘critical mass’ of women. It is however important to realize that this progress has mainly been the result of the selective inclusion of women from more privileged backgrounds.

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Figure 1: Highest education level completed by parent or guardian for members of the SDSS collaboration self-identifying as men and for those self-identifying as women.
Figure 2: Highest education level completed by parent or guardian for individuals of the SDSS collaboration self-identifying as members of a racial or ethnic majority and for those self-identifying as members of a racial or ethnic minority in their institution.


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The authors recognize that this work was done in collaboration with scientists on the 2015–2016 Committee on the Participation of Women in the Sloan Digital Sky Survey, including A. Aragon-Salamanca, B. Cherinka, K. Cunha, B. Gillespie, A. Hagen, A. Jones, K. Kinemuchi, B. Lundgren, A. Myers, A. Roman and G. Zasowski. This work was supported by the SDSS-IV Participating Institutions and the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation.

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Correspondence to Sara Lucatello or Aleksandar Diamond-Stanic.

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Lucatello, S., Diamond-Stanic, A. Diversity and inclusiveness in large scientific collaborations. Nat Astron 1, 0161 (2017).

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