Welcome! I’m excited that you’re considering working in the F.L.A.I.R. Lab. Here’s what you need to know as you decide if you want to join us.
What I want you to take away from this:
Whether you are interested in joining the lab or already a lab member, I hope you will use this page to learn or remind yourself of the kind of workplace community we are building. Some of what’s written here may not yet make sense to you–don’t let that stop you from reaching out! Ultimately, we are all learning together how to be community-oriented and justice-oriented scientists, and if that sounds good to you, welcome!
Fundamentally, I believe that we do our best creative work in environments where we feel safety, connection, and agency. These are built slowly, over time, when we approach our interactions (especially our conflicts) with clear communication, compassion for ourselves and each other, and the following questions in mind:
- What are our responsibilities towards ourselves, one another, and towards our community?
- Are we paying attention to the social systems and power structures in which we and our work are situated?
- What are our own particular needs, wants, and hopes? How can we communicate them, ask for help with them, and be generous when we are asked?
I want our work to be fundamentally oriented towards equity and justice. Knowledge-production wields tremendous power, and there has long been inequity embedded into who gets to produce knowledge and whose knowledge is valued. Thus, inequity has shaped the nature of what we think we know and also demands that we think critically about how we know what we know about the natural world. In growing towards equity and justice, I want us to be able to have generative and rigorous conversations about how our identities and politics impact our science, embracing the notion that the truth is complex and looks different through different lenses. These conversations may be difficult and uncomfortable, but will become easier if we practice approaching each other’s ideas with curiosity, seeking to listen for understanding, and not potholes.
I have been inspired by and learnt from the following people, institutions, and resources. I am grateful for their generosity in sharing their minds and hearts, and so shaping my work.
Lizzy Cooper-Davis and Eleanor Craig: Identity, Power, and Privilege in the Classroom.
Max Liboiron: Civic Lab for Environmental Action Research.