The death of George Floyd in 2020 sparked intense emotion, and increased recognition of the need to take active measures in matters of race within science and academia. This piece considers the field’s immediate actions with regard to Black representation at neuroscience conferences, and whether we are rising to the occasion in an area under our control.
This is a preview of subscription content, access via your institution
Subscribe to Nature+
Get immediate online access to Nature and 55 other Nature journal
Subscribe to Journal
Get full journal access for 1 year
only $6.58 per issue
All prices are NET prices.
VAT will be added later in the checkout.
Tax calculation will be finalised during checkout.
Get time limited or full article access on ReadCube.
All prices are NET prices.
The data that support the findings of this study are available from the corresponding author upon request.
Civil Rights Act of 1964 78 Stat. 241 (1964).
Title VIII of the Civil Rights Act of 1968 82 Stat.73 (1968).
Civil Rights Act of 1991 PL. 102–166 (1991).
SfN Statement on Diversity, Inclusion, and Equity https://www.sfn.org/publications/latest-news/2020/06/02/sfn-statement-on-diversity,-inclusion,-and-equity (2020).
Cell Editorial Team Cell 181, 1443–1444 (2020).
Nature 582, 147 (2020).
Hofstra, B. et al. The diversity-innovation paradox in science. Proc. Natl Acad. Sci. USA 117, 9284–9291 (2020).
Walker, R. Early Am. Stud. 19, 601–640 (2021).
Brandt, A. M. Racism and Research: The Case of the Tuskegee Syphilis Study (The Hastings Center, 1978).
Truog, R. D., Kesselheim, A. S. & Joffe, S. Science 337, 37–38 (2012).
Hardeman, R. R., Medina, E. M. & Kozhimannil, K. B. N. Engl. J Med. 375, 2113–2115 (2016).
Pollock, A. R. D. et al. Catalyst 3, 1–38 (2017).
Jones, C. P. Ethn. Dis. 28, 231–234 (2018).
Burke, L. #ShutDownSTEM Inside Higher Ed https://www.insidehighered.com/news/2020/06/11/scientists-strike-black-lives-more-inclusive-academia (2020).
Society for Neuroscience Black Lives Matter and Neuroscience: Why This Moment Matters https://neuronline.sfn.org/diversity/black-lives-matter-and-neuroscience (2020).
Ramos, R. L., Alvina, K. & Martinez, L. R. J. Undergrad. Neurosci. Educ. 16, A6–A13 (2017).
NCES Characteristics of Postsecondary Faculty https://nces.ed.gov/programs/coe/indicator/csc (2020).
Gibbs, K. D., Basson, J., Xierali, I. M. & Broniatowski, D. A. Elife 5, e21393 (2016).
Valantine, H. A., Lund, P. K. & Gammie, A. E. CBE Life Sci. Educ. 15, 3 (2016).
Hodes, R. J. Diversity in Scientific Meetings and Conferences Optimizes Research Innovations https://www.nia.nih.gov/news/diversity-scientific-meetings-and-conferences-optimizes-research-innovations (National Institute on Aging, 2019).
Nat. Methods 16, 563 (2019).
Platt, M. O. Nat. Rev. Mater. 5, 783–784 (2020).
Pendergrass, A. et al. Guide to Organizing Inclusive Scientific Meetings: Where to Start (500 Women Scientists, 2019).
Crutcher, B. N. Liberal Educ. 100, 2 (2014).
Forrester, N. Nature 585, S65–S67 (2020).
Foxx, A. J. et al. Proc. Natl Acad. Sci. USA 116, 14931–14936 (2019).
I thank my colleagues on the ASNR Executive Board and the ASNR Program Committee, and the many colleagues who have reached out and asked me questions about what they can do.
The author declares no competing interests.
Peer review information Nature Neuroscience thanks Sheena Josselyn, Bianca Marlin, Lucina Uddin, and the other, anonymous, reviewer(s) for their contribution to the peer review of this work.
About this article
Cite this article
Wheaton, L.A. Racial equity and inclusion still lacking in neuroscience meetings. Nat Neurosci 24, 1645–1647 (2021). https://doi.org/10.1038/s41593-021-00964-9
This article is cited by
Nature Neuroscience (2023)