Anti-Racism Statement

Outcry demanding justice for Black people was renewed here, in Minneapolis, Minnesota on May 25, 2020 with the killing of George Floyd. Individuals, companies, government, and even institutions like the Minnesota Section of the American Institute of Professional Geologists (AIPG) are evaluating how their groups can affect positive change in how Black, Indigenous, and People of Color (BIPOC) are treated by society. AIPG is a professional organization based on competence, integrity, and ethics. The Minnesota Section of AIPG believes these core values prohibit racism and prejudice. Our continuing obligation as a professional organization is to ensure we conduct our business, advocacy, and outreach in a manner that is anti-racist and inclusive.

 

The geosciences are not as diverse as other sciences (Dutt 2020; Goldberg 2019). The Minnesota Section of AIPG's Executive Committee invite our section members to challenge themselves to truly become more welcoming, anti-racist, and inclusive so that we, as geoscientists and Professional Geologists, can continue to promote the public welfare of all Minnesotans. With this in mind, we welcome your feedback and dialogue so that we may actively improve our organization and this profession.

 

We have started a collection of articles and books featuring the topic of Racial Justice & Geology, including the two referenced articles, available at https://aipgmn.org/Racial_Justice_and_Geology_Resources. Please send us additional resources to share!

  1. Dutt, Kueli. Race and Racism in the Geosciences. Nature Geoscience, vol. 13, 2020, pp. 2-3. Available online at https://www.nature.com/articles/s41561-019-0519-z. This article uses data collected by the American Geosciences Institute (AGI), of which AIPG is a member organization, in their 2016 Status of the Geoscience Workforce publication. The newer 2018 Status of the Geoscience Workforce publication was released in March 2020: https://www.americangeosciences.org/news/agi-publishes-2018-status-geoscience-workforce-report

  2. Goldberg, Emma. Earth Science has a Whiteness Problem. New York Times, Dec. 23, 2019. Available online at https://www.nytimes.com/2019/12/23/science/earth-science-diversity-education.html.

 

Framework for Addressing Racial & Ethnic Equity in Geosciences Professional Societies

The American Institute for Professional Geologists (AIPG) is a member society of the American Geosciences Institute (AGI). In December 2020, AGI released a framework, crafted by a committee of representatives from AGI member societies, that sets a framework for geoscience societies to proactively cultivate an inclusive profession that both addresses systemic issues and sets priorities aimed at increasing equity for Black, Indigenous, and People of Color (BIPOC) geoscientists and addressing issues of intersectionality among race, class, disability status and gender.

Please read the diversity framework on the AGI website for details.  The specific actions steps of the framework are:

  • Participate in and contribute to the formation of a proactive Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (DEI) Committee across the geosciences and under the AGI organizational umbrella, to help societies comprehensively review and improve their practices from top to bottom (e.g. governance, bylaws, committees, assignments, publications, meetings, awards, membership, programs, accountability) and to share and use leading practices.
  • Strive to cultivate an environment and practices that are safe, inclusive, and not simply a superficial response to the systemic exclusion of Black, Indigenous, Latinx, Asian/Pacific Islander, and Middle Eastern and North African groups or other marginalized racial and ethnic groups.
  • Proactively champion and advocate for the complete inclusion of students of color as important and necessary participants in the scientific community.
  • Promote and provide discussions and increased education on respect for indigenous knowledge and rights in geoscience in our annual geoscience meetings and conferences.
  • Collaborate on, create, and support initiatives such as affinity groups and robust mentoring programs across the geosciences and within membership of our respective organizations, including a focus on support to meet the needs of marginalized racial and ethnic groups, such as Black, Indigenous, Latinx, Asian/Pacific Islander, and Middle Eastern and North African students, postdocs, research staff, professional geoscientists and faculty.
  • Make transparent the demographic composition of annual award recipients, and invited speaking opportunities within our respective organizations.  If they are not diverse, we will make an effort to encourage nominations for awards and speaking opportunities for members of underrepresented racial/ethnic, cultural, and ability groups.