Reboot STEMM: re-defining academic “success” for a more inclusive STEM sector

Reboot STEMM: re-defining academic “success” for a more inclusive STEM sector

Reboot STEMM is a think tank run through the Australian Academy of Science and organised by members of the Australian STEMM sector (Science Technology Engineering Math and Medicine).

Funded by a Theo Murphy Initiative (Australia) grant the think tank aims to engage Early- and Mid-Career Researcher (EMCRs) across Australia in a conversation about co-designing a strategy for a more inclusive and diverse STEMM sector.

The vision of Reboot STEM is to “support EMCRs Australia-wide to reimagine a future for the STEMM sector where we support openness, collaboration, diversity, alternative career paths, mentoring, sponsorship, and engagement while simultaneously increasing the quality and innovation of our academic research”.

On June 22, many Australian EMCRs met online for an online interactive event to exchange ideas and discuss what we think is needed to change how we define, recognise and reward ‘success’ in Academia. The event started with keynote speeches by Dr Cathy Foley, Australia’s Chief Scientist and Kirsten Deane, Executive Director of the National Disability and Carers Alliance. This was followed by breakout sessions focused on range of topics including open science, diversification of careers, team science, mentoring, impact, and the future of the Australian research landscape.

During the event there was a strong sense of enthusiasm and commitment towards collective action to Reboot STEMM in Australia. Check out #rebootSTEMM on twitter to read some of the discussions from the day.

The think tank was inspired by a global movement including DORA, the 2012 San Francisco Declaration on Research Assessment that aims to address the “pressing need to improve the ways in which the output of scientific research is evaluated by funding agencies, academic institutions, and other parties”.

More recently, the Recognition and Rewards programme in the Netherlands calls for a STEMM sector that has “room for everyone’s talent”. The initiative collaborates with all Dutch universities, medical centres, research institutes and funding agencies to work towards a cultural change that encourages collaboration, open science, inclusion, a focus on quality and recognition of diverse career paths.

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