Improving the workplace - science practice and ethics

Kwek Leong Chuan, Centre for Quantum Technologies, Singapore

Silvina Ponce Dawson, Universidad de Buenos Aires and CONICET, Argentina 

This workshop will address two closely related issues both from a general perspective and from the point of view of the activities and development of women physicists. The two of them are related to “Best practices in Science”: best practices for the interaction, collaboration, recognition and promotion of the members of the scientific community and for the way that the problems under study are addressed by the community.

The first two sessions will start with one talk given by experts and will then be followed by discussion and participation of the attendants. Great part of the effort will be put in finalizing the declaration of principles and charter of good practices that we named “Waterloo Charter for Women in Physics”. Workshop participants are encouraged to read before hand its latest draft that is available at: Charter_Ver5p.pdf.

During the third session, we will summarize the themes discussed in the first two sessions, discuss and finalize corrections to the Chapter and elaborate a series of recommendations to be presented at the final General Assembly of ICWIP17.


Monday 17th July, 11:15-12:45

Why research integrity matters?

Tony Mayer, Europe Representative and Research Integrity Officer, President’s Office, Nanyang Technological University, Singapore

Science advances incrementally and so any flaws in previous theory and results impacts current research. Therefore, there has to be trust in research and in our colleagues’ work. The lack of integrity, whether this be research misconduct or ‘sloppy science’, wastes resources especially time. The lack of reproducible results is now a major challenge. Three cases will be presented and their implications will be discussed. The number of women researchers involved in research misconduct is small. Is this a reflection of the under-representation of women in science or are women scientists more intrinsically honest than their male co-workers? This should be a point for debate.

Tuesday 18th July, 10:45-12:15

Project Juno: Advancing Gender Equality in Physics Careers in Higher Education in the UK.

Jennifer Dyer, Head of Diversity, Institute of Physics, UK

Val Gibson, Cambridge University, UK

The Institute of Physics (IOP) has a longstanding interest in diversity issues, particularly around the participation of girls and women in physics, who are under-represented in physics education and employment. In 2003, the Institute introduced a Site Visit scheme, in which selected panels visited physics departments and produced a dedicated report on their “gender inclusiveness”. After two years, the results of these visits were condensed into a general report: Women in University Physics Departments: a Site Visit Scheme. Building upon the best practice identified in this influential report, in 2007 the IOP established Project Juno, an award scheme that aims to promote gender equality in higher education physics departments. The Juno Principles provide a framework for specific actions to improve the participation and retention, particularly of women, in physics careers. The main aims of the scheme are to develop an equitable, open and transparent working culture in which students and staff, men and women, can all achieve their full potential; to promote open discussion of gender and other equality issues; and to encourage departments to determine priorities for action. Departments submit for the award and are assessed by an independent Panel of physicists with longstanding experience of addressing gender equality issues. There are three levels of the scheme (Supporter, Practitioner and Champion) and almost all of the 55 physics departments in the UK and Ireland are now participating, together with Research Institutes and one company. Currently, there are 19 Supporters, 14 Supporters and 17 Champions. Good practice from one or two Champion departments will also be discussed.

Wednesday 19th July, 10:30-12:00

Wrap up, final discussions, corrections to the Waterloo Charter for Women in Physics and elaboration of proposals

Background on the Waterloo Charter for Women in Physics:

the Charter was initiated at the fifth IUPAP International Conference for Women in Physics organized by the working group on WIP in Waterloo, Canada from August 5-8, 2014. We expect to finalize it during the sixth ICWIP in Birmingham, UK from July 16-20, 2017 and present it at its General Assembly the last day of the conference. The Charter is based on the rubrics of the Baltimore Charter and the Pasadena Recommendations formulated by the American Astronomical Society in 1993 and 2003 respectively. The document is also shaped and guided by the principles dictated by the JUNO project initiated by the Institute of Physics (UK). It contains a series of recommendations for key players of the Physics community at all levels to implement strategies that will enable women to succeed within the existing structures of Physics and allow the desired acceptance of diversity to develop fully. Please find its latest draft at: Charter_Ver5p.pdf

Key dates

  • Abstract submission deadline:
    31 May 2017
  • Early registration deadline:
    31 May 2017
  • Proceedings deadline:
    30 June 2017
  • Registration deadline:
    7 July 2017
  • Paper reviews deadline:
    14 August 2017