Sexual Harassment in the Sciences – a #ScienceCandle radio round table on Feb 12th

Academic science has been rocked recently by a series of sexual harassment scandals involving high profile scientists at renowned institutions. While sexual assault and issues of discrimination in college athletics programs have received a lot of media attention, academic programs at universities have not seen the same level of scandal or attention until recently. Tune in this Friday afternoon, at 2:30PM for a special edition of “Science: A Candle In The Dark” where host Dr. Madhusudan Katti will shine a light on this serious yet underreported issue in a round-table discussion featuring professors and scientists from a range of academic institutions, and an interview with California Congresswoman Jackie Speier who is bringing legislative attention to the problem from the US House of Representatives. 

Tune in to KFCF 88.1FM for this roundtable at 2:30PM on Friday, February 12th, or listen to the discussion on the show’s podcast afterwards.

In addition to the interview with Rep. Speier, the round table will feature:

  • Dr. Janet Stemwedel, Philosophy Professor at San Jose State University (with dual PhDs in Chemistry and Philosophy), and columnist for where she has written some strong pieces about sexual harassment in the scientific community, and the things institutions must do to start addressing the problem.
  • Dr Katie Hinde, Anthropology Professor at Arizona State University, and co-author of the 2014 paper on harassment and assault in field research situations (#SAFE13), who has also recently written a must-read piece on how we might go about fixing academic culture to make it safer and more inclusive for diverse people.
  • Dr. Jacquelyn Gill, Paleoecologist at Maine University, another field researcher and faculty member taking on the challenge of changing academic culture, with an active voice on social media despite facing pushback from trolls.
  • Dr. Kathryn Forbes, Cultural Anthropologist on the faculty of the Women’s Studies program at California State University, Fresno, whose research focuses on gender and public policy, Title IX cases in different campuses, and the flaws in how institutions conduct investigations into cases of harassment and sexual assault.
  • Dr. Amanda Mortimer, Psychology Professor at California State University, Fresno, whose research focuses on dementia and memory, and who can speak to the effects of long-term stressors such as persistently hostile work environments.
  • Dr. Kaberi Kar Gupta, Primatologist directing the Urban Slender Loris Project in Bangalore,  with international field research experience, where she has challenged the domination of certain disciplines by macho male culture, and it’s costs on women and to the disciplines as well.
  • Dr. Karen James, Biologist at the Mountain Desert Island Biological Laboratory in Maine, working at the intersection of research, education, and outreach involving citizen science, and another active voice on issues of sexism and sexual harassment in science, who has also faced harassment from social media trolls.

This promises to be an important. wide-ranging, and deep conversation about the culture of academia and the institutional structures that must be radically changed in order to make the academy, across all disciplines, a more nurturing environment which helps everyone grow and contribute their best scholarship without having to worry about discrimination or harassment on the basis of their gender identity, sexual orientation, race, nationality, or ethnicity. Do listen, and share your thoughts in the comments below.

12. Charles Darwin in 2016


Science: A Candle In The Dark
Episode 12: Why do we need Charles Darwin in 2016?
Airdate: 26 January 2016
Host: Dr. Madhusudan Katti
Guests: Dr. Dawn M. Digrius

Topic: With Darwin Day 2016 coming up, science historian Dr. Dawn Digrius talks to Dr. Madhusudan Katti to share stories about Charles Darwin, and how his work remains relevant to our concerns in 2016.

For more information about the Café and announcements about upcoming events, please visit our website, or find us on Facebook and Twitter.

Why we need Charles Darwin in 2016 – a #DarwinDay event


Once again, this February, we celebrate Darwin Day in the Café Scientifique with a special guest, a historian of science, speaking about the continuing relevance of Charles Darwin to science and to our lives in the 21st century. Join us for a conversation about “Why we need Darwin in 2016: Sustainability, Evolution, and the Global Environment.” Darwin’s 217th birthday will be celebrated a week after our Café event, on February 12th.

Headshot October 2015.jpgOur guest Dr. Dawn Mooney Digrius is the Senior Project Manager for the STEM Collaboratives Project at the California State University Office of the Chancellor. Prior to coming to the Chancellor’s Office, Digrius was Assistant Professor of History at Stevens Institute of Technology. Her research centers on the history of water, agriculture and sustainability in Latin America and beyond. While running an international project in Ecuador and El Salvador, she also served as Main Representative for the International Health Awareness Network from 2011-2014 to the United Nations. Digrius participated in the Rio+20 conference and the Open Working Groups for the Development of the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals. Her deep commitment to Sustainable Development is reflected in her scholarly work and in an upcoming short documentary film, Not Just Illegals, highlighting the plight of Salvadorans and their migration to the United States as a result of violence and limited economic opportunities. She has two grown children and lives in Long Beach, California.

Special note: Our host for the past two years, Peeve’s Public House’s owner Craig Scharton, recently made a heartfelt plea for all of our support and patronage to help his business survive in the tough downtown location. Craig is a rare businessman with a strong civic sense committed to reviving Fresno’s beleaguered downtown, and has run Peeve’s as a genuine Public House, not as a mere watering hole, but as a venue for the public to enjoy music, sports, the arts, and of course, science. We would love to continue this long-term relationship with Peeve’s as our permanent home, but can only do so if we can help keep the pub in business. So please do what you can to provide your patronage to the pub, and get your friends and family out there too, so we can show that such a pub can remain a viable business in Fresno.

So join us on the first Wednesday (note the change in day for our cafe) of February to enjoy a pint of the fine brews Peeve’s has on tap, with some food, and a hearty helping of science and history to celebrate another Darwin Day!

Speaker: Dr. Dawn M. Digrius, California State University

When: Wednesday, 3 February 2016, 7:00 PM

Where: Peeve’s Public House
, 1243 Fulton Mall, Fresno, CA 93721.

Contact: 559-278-2460 (cafe inquiries) / 559-573-5735 (Pub’s number).

Here’s the full poster for this event – please feel free to download, print, and/or share with your friends and family: