As Associate Head Diversity and Inclusion (Biological Sciences) at The University of Adelaide my core values comprise collaboration, community and inclusion
Clear imbalances in the opportunities for women and minorities in science exist and there is a very specific career trajectory is often required for those hoping to succeed in academia with little to no flexibility for career delays or breaks (i.e. leaky pipeline). There are also very specific problems facing people working on fixed-term contracts at Universities that are systemic and widespread. Limited job security, little to no opportunity for promotion, poor recognition of actual achievements due to funding rules and/or attribution of credit to supervisors.
To positively address the rising dismay I have observed amongst my peer group I helped found the BSEMCRA, a network of EMCR’s that fosters positive communication, support and mentorship for fixed term contract academics and I have served as Vice President since foundation. I also co-authored the EMCR Statement, a white paper that aims to provide a clear and constructive outlet for the difficulties facing non-tenured staff at the University of Adelaide and outlined clear, positive and actionable solutions that could be implemented by the University.
Awareness of issues is an important first step but positive and actionable solutions are critical to their resolution.