WMU Ethics Center announces keynote speaker on privilege in research ethics

Contact: Sandra Borden

KALAMAZOO, Mich.—Western Michigan University’s Center for the Study of Ethics in Society has announced the keynote speaker for a National Science Foundation-funded conference Feb. 25 in Cincinnati.

Sarina Saturn, Ph.D., editor of the ADVANCE Journal for Individual and Institutional Transformation for Social Justice, will headline the one-day conference focused on privilege in research ethics titled “Privileged Logics: Interrogating Foundations and Practices in Research Ethics.”

NSF awarded the Ethics Center $49,792 for a one-year grant to plan and host the conference in cooperation with the Association for Practical and Professional Ethics.

A neuroscientist and social justice advocate, Saturn devotes her time educating communities on LGBTQ2SIA+ and other minority groups’ trauma healing and growth. She currently serves as the director of strategic partnerships at OEA Choice Trust. She has extensive education and research experience as an associate professor at the University of Portland and Oregon State University, as a community research evaluation scientist at the Multnomah County Health Department and Oregon Health Authority, and as a presenter and facilitator to diverse audiences.

Privileged Logics 2024 aims to raise awareness about issues of privilege in research ethics, generate useful concepts for understanding them, and identify broadly applicable recommendations for addressing them that build on inclusive mentoring and other promising practices that already exist in research ethics. This project promotes fairness and equity in science, in alignment with NSF’s mission, by expanding knowledge about the negative impacts of privilege in research and identifying effective strategies for mitigating them.  

A goal of the conference is to assemble a network of experts who want to develop a standard ethical and responsible research (ER2) proposal using ideas from the conference to generate new topics in ER2 and new standards for STEM research and RCR training.  

The conference format will use focused workshop conversations around successful strategies for remedying biases and removing barriers resulting from privilege in STEM research.   

The conference will run from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the Hilton Cincinnati Netherland Plaza. Limited space is available to attend and participate in workshop discussions. To apply, complete this online form. Applications will be reviewed on a rolling basis until Feb. 2 or until all slots are filled.

To learn more about the Center for the Study of Ethics in Society, visit wmich.edu/ethics.

About the Center for the Study of Ethics in Society

In August 1985, the Center for the Study of Ethics in Society was created after WMU faculty across the curriculum met to discuss their common interests in studying and teaching ethics. Each academic year, the center sponsors 15 to 20 public presentations addressing a wide range of ethical issues. Originally sponsored by WMU’s Graduate College, the center is now housed in the College of Arts and Sciences.

For more WMU news, arts and events, visit WMU News online.