Bringing Greater Equity to the Global Research Enterprise (Part IV)

Star Scott, University of Georgia

This session builds upon the body of work presented at the 2019, 2020, and 2021 I2SL conferences demonstrating the connections between the research enterprise, justice and equity. As our community strives to build, operate, and foster a culture of more sustainable laboratories, we must consider the broader impacts of our efforts. The global research enterprise must evolve to become more sustainable and more equitable--not only for the creators, operators, and occupants of these facilities, but for people outside of our community who are impacted by extractive processes, manufacturing, transporting, building, and maintaining high-tech research facilities, scientific procurement, and the management of related waste streams.

This presentation will explore new examples of connections between the research enterprise and equity. We will also share concrete actions our community can embrace to bring greater equity into the creation and operation of high-tech research facilities. We will explore how laboratories and institutions can operate in ways that benefit people, rather than passing burdens off to other communities. All attendees at the I2SL conference will have something to gain from attending this session. The goal is to help facilitate a shift within the research enterprise where considerations of communities beyond our own become an integral part of our work.

Learning Objectives

  • Explain how social justice and equity are critical components of sustainability (brief overview for new attendees);
  • Understand how social justice is connected to the creation and operation of laboratory facilities and the research enterprise as a whole;
  • Explore new information and examples of how the research enterprise impacts outside communities, as well as inequities faced by those involved in research; and
  • Learn about ideas for alleviating some of the social justice challenges that arise from the research enterprise--relevant actions regardless of what your touch-point with scientific research is (building and design, manufacturing, purchasing, research, operations, etc.).


Star Scott is the Green Labs program manager at the University of Georgia. She has a background in conservation-driven research and is dedicated to making the research enterprise more sustainable and more equitable. She is a founding Vice President of the Georgia chapter of I2SL and is a Higher Education Associations Sustainability Consortium (HEASC) fellow.


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