Global environmental problems necessitate a diverse group of minds, bodies, and lives coming together to imagine (and then achieve!) conserving and sustaining natural and human communities in ethical ways. My teaching and research are shaped by these professional and intellectual commitments. Additionally, my outreach and volunteer efforts are shaped by these commitments, with a focus on accessibility for learners from birth.
Creating space to be our full(er) selves
Our diversity isn’t neutral - it actively informs our work and scholarship. We are committed to listening and doing the work to welcome my collaborators and trainees into safe(r) spaces to be our full(er) selves. The SWEET collaborative collectively also strives to achieve these commitments; it’s a shared endeavor that requires responsibility to and trust in each other to welcome and cherish, not merely tolerate, our differences.
As an advisor, Dr. Stack Whitney is committed to pluralism. Many students must codeswitch to navigate higher education, so we incorporate Tara J. Yosso’s community cultural wealth framework, to value all the experiences and parts of students’ identities that they bring to scholarship.
Addressing inequity and power in our work and teams
People first, projects second. We acknowledge and honor that making and holding space to be our full(er) selves means prioritizing people and their well-being above any deliverable or timeline. This looks like flexibility in tasks, methods, tools, timelines and more.
We strive to make the physical and intellectual collaborative spaces places of inclusion for all students, where we critically engage complicated topics. This requires addressing historical structural barriers to equity, and asking students to think critically about barriers that still exist and how they inform our projects. Students are best equipped to be leaders ready to solve global environmental problems when we don’t avoid uncomfortable factors that influence their and others’ ability to do rigorous and ethical work in community.
Openness without extraction
SWEET is committed to inclusion, accessibility, and reproducibility. Yet while “openness” is now becoming more accepted in research fields as ‘best’ practice, it is not an inherently positive attribute or goal. Open data and research must not benefit some at the expense of marginalized communities, particularly nonwhite, indigenous, and multiply-marginalized communities and their data. SWEET is committed to ongoing learning, research, and engagement in conversations on ethical open scholarship and critical open studies.