Taproot S6E4: Can We Force Academic Structures to be Inclusive?

In this episode, we speak with Jason Williams, Assistant Director of Inclusion and Research Readiness at the DNA Learning Center at Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory. Jason is also lead for CyVerse Education, Outreach, and Training – the U.S. National Cyberinfrastructure for Life Science. Jason received his B.S. in Biology from SUNY Stonybrook in 2004, then worked as a technician in several labs at Cold Spring Harbor, and then transitioned to multiple roles in the DNA Learning Center In 2009.

We discuss an article Jason and colleagues recently published in Science, entitled “Achieving STEM diversity: Fix the classrooms. Outdated teaching methods amount to discrimination”. We also talk about the nuance and complexities around improving diversity, equity and inclusion in STEM education, in planning conferences, and in running scientific societies. Have a listen!

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Paper: J. Handelsman, S. Elgin, M. Estrada, S. Hays, T. Johnson, S. Miller, V. Mingo, C. Schaffer, and J. Williams. (2022). Science 376:1057-1059. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/35653460/


Twitter Handles 

Liz Haswell Twitter @ehaswell

Ivan Baxter Twitter @baxtertwi

Jason Williams Twitter @JasonWilliamsNY

Taproot Podcast Twitter @taprootpodcast


The Taproot is the podcast that digs beneath the surface to understand how scientific publications in plant biology are created. In each episode, co-hosts Liz Haswell and Ivan Baxter take a paper from the literature and talk about the story behind the science with one of its authors.

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Questions, feedback, suggestions?  Contact us at taproot@plantae.org.


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