How scientific leaders can enact anti-racist action in their labs

How scientific leaders can enact anti-racist action in their labs
Author Bala Chaudhary at work. Chaudhary teaches environmental science and leads a research group that studies mycorrhizas, beneficial plant-fungal symbioses, and their belowground ecology. Credit: Jamie Moncrief

A new paper provides 10 steps that principal investigators (PIs) and research group leaders can follow to help cultivate anti-racist professional and learning environments. V. Bala Chaudhary of DePaul University, Chicago, and Asmeret Asefaw Berhe of U.C. Merced present these guidelines in the open-access journal PLOS Computational Biology.


The science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) workforce exhibits disproportionately low racial and ethnic diversity due to a variety of factors that include bias, discrimination, and power imbalances within academia. The STEM community increasingly recognizes low representation of Black, Indigenous, and people of color (BIPOC)—especially at and above the Ph.D. level—as a significant problem. Lab leaders may be able to make considerable progress towards increased diversity by building anti-racist labs, but many lack clarity on

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