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AAAS Communicating Science Workshops Code Of Conduct

AAAS Commitment

AAAS is committed to providing a safe and productive meeting environment that fosters open dialogue and the exchange of scientific ideas, promotes equal opportunities and treatment for all participants, and is free of harassment and discrimination. All participants are expected to treat others with respect and consideration, follow venue rules, and alert staff or security of any dangerous situations or anyone in distress. Speakers are expected to uphold standards of scientific integrity and professional ethics. This includes notifying AAAS staff in advance of the meeting about any possible conflicts of interest. AAAS recognizes that there are areas of science that are controversial. The AAAS Communicating Science workshop can serve as an effective forum to explore science-relevant viewpoints in an orderly, respectful, and fair manner. The policies herein apply to all attendees, and staff participating in the program.


AAAS prohibits any form of harassment, sexual or otherwise. Harassment should be reported immediately to the AAAS Center for Public Engagement with Science and Technology: or (202) 326-6400.


What is Harassment?

Harassment includes speech or behavior that is not welcome or is personally offensive, whether it is based on ethnicity, gender, religion, age, body size, disability, veteran status, marital status, sexual orientation, gender identity, or any other reason not related to scientific merit. It includes stalking, unnecessary touching, and unwelcome attention.


Behavior that is acceptable to one person may not be acceptable to another, so use discretion to be sure that respect is communicated. Harassment intended in a joking manner still constitutes unacceptable behavior. Retaliation for reporting harassment is also a violation of this policy, as is reporting an incident in bad faith.


Seeking Assistance and Reporting Harassment

AAAS is committed to providing a productive and safe working environment for everyone.


If an individual experiences or witnesses harassment and wishes to immediately file a formal report, they should contact the AAAS Center for Public Engagement with Science and Technology at or (202) 326-6400. All complaints will be treated seriously and responded to promptly.


If an individual experiences harassment, it is recommended that, in addition to notifying AAAS Center for Public Engagement with Science and Technology staff, they write down the details. They are not expected to discuss the incident with the offending party. Their confidentiality will be maintained to the extent that it does not compromise the rights of others.


If an individual wishes to file a formal complaint of harassment:

  • Notify AAAS Center for Public Engagement with Science and Technology: or (202) 326-6400.
  • AAAS staff will then discuss the details first with the individual filing the complaint, then with the alleged offender; seek counsel if the appropriate course of action is unclear; and report findings to the AAAS Executive Office.
  • AAAS will consult with the individual filing the complaint prior to taking any action.

AAAS reserves the right to remove an individual from the AAAS Communicating Science program and notify the individual’s employer.


For any questions about this policy, please contact Emily Cloyd, Director of the Center for Public Engagement with Science and Technology, at