Safe working environments are key to improving inclusion in open-ocean, deep-ocean, and high-seas science
With growing acknowledgement of the need to address disparities in capacities to undertake open-ocean, deep-ocean, and high-seas scientific research, numerous global initiatives have been launched to make ocean science more inclusive, equitable, and accessible. Participation in offshore research cruises has emerged as a primary activity to achieve this. While admirable, the experiences of underrepresented groups in offshore science show that there needs to be a step change in approaches to ensure safety and inclusion. Instances where discrimination, bullying, harassment, and assault occur do not build capacity; instead, they perpetuate the fundamental inequities that should be addressed. Yet we do not hear about these experiences, and there is a need for conversations about how to ensure safe working spaces at sea. We propose steps to support inclusion and safety for underrepresented groups within offshore science.
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University of Washington