Birds of a Feather
What the Heck is a Microaggression?
Event Type
Birds of a Feather
Building Community
TimeTuesday, July 305:15pm - 6:15pm
DescriptionIn this Birds of a Feather session, the effects of microaggressions on the research computing and data workforce will be discussed. Microaggressions are brief and common verbal, nonverbal, and environmental slights and indignities, whether they are intentional or not, towards marginalized groups. These acts can have major impact on the productivity of teams and individuals, as they can lead to lack of participation, engagement, and performance.

It is widely reported that diverse and inclusive teams are more innovative, productive, and effective. Inclusivity is also important in the retention of employees . The purpose of this discussion is to make the PEARC community aware that recruiting diverse professionals into the field is not enough. While unaware of an existing study on the demographics of the research computing and data workforce, studies of the higher education IT workforce show demographics as largely male, white, and older. In order to attract and retain the diverse workforce needed to provide researchers important tools and skills, the research computing and data community members at all levels need to create an inclusive community. Developing and retaining skilled individuals is required to support cloud-based and containerized workflows, growing numbers of end users, and emerging and growing computational research areas (such as digital humanities, genomics, and the social sciences). This Birds of a Feather session will be focused on one key area of providing an inclusive environment so that we can develop a workforce that we need to support research successfully.