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What are the impacts of performing a Decadal Survey during a global pandemic?

May 14, 2020

The following post was written and contributed by the members of the Professional Culture and Climate Subcommittee of the AAS’s DPS.

The Planetary Science and Astrobiology Decadal Survey is a once-in-ten-years opportunity for the research community to provide critical input into the U.S. strategy for space research.  The survey is in its early stages; nominations for panel membership were due on May 1st, and white papers (a major form of community input[1]) are due July 4th.

However, since the Statement of Task for this Decadal Survey was formulated, the coronavirus pandemic has caused major disruption throughout our society, including in the work of planetary scientists.  Of greatest concern for the Decadal Survey, this burden falls unevenly.  For example, the pandemic has disproportionately affected the scientific productivity of women researchers[2], and racial and ethnic minority communities overall[3].

Read more…

NASA Implements New Harassment Reporting Requirements

May 8, 2020

By Andrea Peterson

Starting in April, NASA-funded institutions are required to notify the agency whenever they determine a principal or co-investigator has violated policies concerning harassment or assault, or if the personnel are placed on leave due to a harassment investigation. NASA modeled the policy on one first implemented by the National Science Foundation in 2018.

 
Read more at

https://www.aip.org/fyi/2020/nasa-implements-new-harassment-reporting-requirements

 

Find the NASA policy at

https://www.federalregister.gov/documents/2020/03/10/2020-04815/reporting-requirements-regarding-findings-of-harassment-sexual-harassment-other-forms-of-harassment

 

Find the NSF policy at

https://www.federalregister.gov/documents/2018/09/21/2018-20574/notification-requirements-regarding-findings-of-sexual-harassment-other-forms-of-harassment-or

Planetary Science Summer School – call for additional applicants! Deadline April 13

April 10, 2020

Hi Allplease encourage any graduate students or postdoctoral researchers you know who may benefit from the Planetary Science Summer School (PSSS) at JPL to apply! I have been getting hints that they need more applicants (extended deadlines, requests to spread the word :)) so please pass this on to anyone who might be interested! Thanks much and stay well! ~Kelsi

—- PSSS Announcement and Info —-

Deadline 4/13! 2020 NASA Planetary Science Summer School (PSSS) Applications
Applications are due 4/13/20 for NASA’s 32nd Annual PSSS, offered by the Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, California. This 3-month early career development experience teaches the development of a hypothesis-driven robotic space mission in a concurrent engineering environment.

Science and engineering doctoral candidates, recent Ph.D.s, postdocs, and junior faculty, who are U.S. Citizens or legal permanent residents (and a very limited number of Foreign Nationals from non-designated counties), are eligible.

Session 1: May 18-Jul 24

Session 2: May 18-Aug 7

Roughly equivalent in workload to a rigorous 3-hour graduate-level course, participants spend the first 10 weeks in preparatory webinars as a “science mission team”, and spend the final culminating week at JPL being mentored by JPL’s Advance Project Design Team, or “Team X” to refine their planetary science mission concept design, and present it to a mock expert review board.

Note: As conditions evolve regarding the Covid-19 outbreak, we are monitoring official recommendations and practices, along with JPL policy, and developing plans to accommodate potential conditions that may be present during the week of travel to JPL for each session.

Please apply and learn more:

http://go.nasa.gov/missiondesignschools

Memorialized on Mercury: A Monument to the Life and Work of Maya Angelou

February 25, 2020
Left: Angelou Crater on Mercury. Right: Portrait of Maya Angelou by Steve Dunwell

“You may write me down in history

With your bitter, twisted lies,

You may trod me in the very dirt

But still, like dust, I’ll rise.”

 – Maya Angelou, Still I Rise 

As we celebrate Black History Month, there is no better time to remember the life and work of the poet, memoirist, dancer, singer, actress, and civil rights activist Maya Angelou (1928-2014). This year, her legacy deserves extra attention. On September 19th, 2019, 50 years after the publication of her most famous work and first autobiography, “I Know Why The Caged Bird Sings”,  a new and permanent monument to her contributions to literature and the arts was approved by the International Astronomical Union (a.k.a the IAU). You may be wondering what outer space has to do with the first Black woman to publish a nonfiction best seller–and that is a reasonable question. 

Read more…

LPSC 2020 – Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion within Planetary Science Networking Event

February 19, 2020

Dear all,

Please see below information about an upcoming event at this year’s LPSC. Hope you can join!


Wednesday, 5:30 to 7:30 PM, Waterway 1-3
Welcome! This event is open to all interested persons. This year, in preparation for the Decadal Survey, we will discuss equity, diversity, and inclusion within planetary science and ways that the field can become more accessible and even to a diverse group of people. Join us for what’s sure to be an exciting panel discussion followed by break-outs to actively participate in drafting Decadal Survey white papers. This event is co-sponsored by the Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion Working Group of the AGs (EDIWoG), the Susan Niebur Women in Planetary Science Group (WiPS), the Professional Culture & Climate Subcommittee (PCCS) of the American Astronomical Society Division for Planetary Sciences (DPS).

For questions about this event, contact one of this year’s organizers:

  • Justin Filiberto, He / Him
  • Mallory Kinczyk, She / Her
  • Moses Milazzo, He / Him
  • Jennifer Piatek, She / Her
  • Julie Rathburn, She / Her
  • Christina Richey, They / Them
  • Nicolle Zellner, She / Her

It is Award Nomination Season! And it needs you to succeed

February 13, 2020

Hello all! I was inspired by these articles that Nicolle Zellner shared on the AASWomen newsletter, about a team of people who made it their mission to help promote equal representation in AGU award nominations.

EOS Article in which they describe their process and gives tips and best practices for success: Equal Representation in Scientific Honors Starts with Nominations

This follow up includes a nice graph of the increase of female participants in 2019

And it is time again to nominate deserving colleagues for awards. Here are some of the major professional societies and their award deadlines (scroll over the text for links):

DPS Award Nominations are open now and close April 1 !!!

AGU Award Nominations are open now and close March 15 !!!

General GSA Award Nominations are mostly closed (on Feb 1), except for recognition of an international colleague, but the Planetary Division Awards deadlines are spread throughout the year !

What other awards are out there? Comment below and I will add them to this list.

Happy Nominating!

Sincerely,

~Kelsi

AGU Bridge Program

January 14, 2020

The American Geophysical Union began a Bridge Program in 2019. It was initiated to “develop, adopt, and share inclusive practices for recruiting, admitting and retaining women and underrepresented minorities in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics graduate programs.”

Fourteen Bridge Partner Institutions were selected for the program because they demonstrated that they will “provide a supportive, inclusive and nurturing environment for students”. These include Georgia State University, Department of Geosciences; Lehigh University, Department of Earth and Environmental Sciences; University of Chicago, Department of the Geophysical Sciences; and University of Wisconsin–Madison, Department of Atmospheric and Oceanic Sciences.

 

Read more and find the full list of Bridge Partner Institutions at

https://www.agu.org/bridge-program#1