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Resources: Two-body problem, work-life balance, sexual harassment, mentoring, unconscious bias, diversity, taking a career break, other resources


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About the Committee on the Status of Women in Astronomy

What's New:

October 2018 - The AAS is developing a Climate Site Visits Program that applies to departmental climates for all marginalized groups. The Climate Site Visit Oversight Committee has developed a "Best Practices" document and a detailed protocol for site visits and will appoint a Site Visit Team to conduct the visits. Visits will be at the invitation of individual astronomy departments.

At the 233rd AAS meeting in Seattle, WA in January, 2018, the Site Visit Oversight Committee will hold a town hall (2019 January 8, 1 to 2 PM), in which they will outline the protocol and explain how departments might benefit from a site visit.

Members of the CSWA presented a poster about our committee at the Maria Mitchell Women in Science Symposium in Wellesley, MA, October 5 - 6, 2018.

January 2017 - The National Radio Astronomy Observatory (NRAO) and the American Astronomical Society (AAS), with support from the National Science Foundation (NSF), are pleased to announce that the 4th Women in Astronomy (WIA IV) meeting will be held during 2 1/2 days, beginning the morning after the 230th AAS meeting in Austin, Texas, in the same conference hotel (JW Marriott Austin). Please mark your calendar, and watch the meeting website developments at go.nrao.edu/wiaIV. Nancy Morrison is serving as the Organizing Committee Chair and is welcoming suggestions and comments at wiaIV@nrao.edu.

August 2016 - The AAS has endorsed the vision statement that emerged from the inaugural meeting on Inclusive Astronomy. That meeting was held June 17-19, 2015, at Vanderbilt University in Nashville, TN.

January 2015 - The inaugural meeting on Inclusive Astronomy will be held June 17-19, 2015, at Vanderbilt University in Nashville, TN. Inclusive Astronomy 2015 will cover advocacy and resources for the inclusion in the astronomy community of people holding various identities. The organizing committee includes members of the Committee on the Status of Minorities in Astronomy, the CSWA, and the Working Group on LGBTIQ Equality of the American Astronomical Society.

January 2015 - at the 225th AAS meeting in Seattle, WA, CSWA sponsored special session 209, entitled, "What Have We Learned from the NSF ADVANCE Program and What's Next?" The organizers were Johanna K. Teske and the CSWA's Neil Gehrels, and the chair was Neil Gehrels. Presentation materials are posted here.

April 2014 - At the 224th AAS meeting in Boston, MA, the CSWA sponsored a Town Hall on the topic, "Addressing Sexual Violence on College Campuses." Time and place: Tuesday, June 3, 2014, 12:45pm-1:45pm, Staffordshire (Westin Copley Place). Presenters: Boston Area Rape Crisis Center (BARCC).

October 2013 - At the 223rd AAS meeting near Washington, DC, the CSWA will present a Town Hall describing the results of the CSWA Demographics Survey 2013. Since 1992, the CSWA has been conducting demographics surveys of major astronomy departments and divisions since 1992 to track the representation of women across the field. Discussion about the implications for policy in our field will be invited. Organizer: A. Meredith Hughes. Tuesday, January 7, 2014, 12:45 PM to 1:45 PM. Presentation slides available here.

August 2013 - At the 223rd AAS meeting near Washington, DC, CSWA and the AAS Committee on the Status of Minorities in Astronomy (CSMA) will co-sponsor a special session entitled, 'The Proper Use of GRE Scores for Enhancing Diversity and Excellence in Astronomy Graduate Programs." The session is scheduled for for Wednesday, January 8, 2014, 10:00 to 11:30 AM.

January 2013 (updated) - At the 221st AAS meeting at Long Beach, CA, CSWA sponsored a special session on Monday, January 7, 2013, from 2:00 to 3:30 PM entitled, "Family Leave Policies and Childcare for Graduate Students and Postdocs." Speaker list and other details here. The presentation slides are now posted in PDF here.

August 2010 - Our Pasadena Recommendations endorsement page is now open for qualified endorsements. Departments that wish to endorse the recommendations but have reservations may now be listed with an asterisk and supply a document describing those reservations. The MIT Department of Physics has made the first qualified endorsement. More information from that department's chair, Edmund Bertschinger, can be found in AASWomen for August 27, 2010.

November 2009 -

The Baltimore Charter and Pasadena Recommendations

The Baltimore Charter and Pasadena Recommendations are documents produced as a result of the Women in Astronomy Meetings held in Baltimore in 1992 and Pasadena in 2003. The first document describes a code of conduct governing gender issues, particularly aimed at U.S. institutions, while the latter document is a set of recommendations for institutions hoping to achieve true gender equity. The links to the individual documents and meetings provide much more information.

Endorse the Pasadena Recommendations

The President of the AAS and the Chairperson of the CSWA have asked that astronomical institutions formally endorse the Pasadena Recommendations. Your institution can do so by going to the endorsement page located here, and following the instructions contained within.

About the CSWA

The Committee on the Status of Women in Astronomy was established in 1979 and now consists of eleven members who serve staggered 3-year terms. Our charge is to recommend to the AAS Board of Trustees practical measures that can be taken to improve the status of women in astronomy and encourage their entry into this field. We have several electronic publications: AASWomen, a weekly newsletter; the Women in Astronomy Blog, and Status, a semiannual magazine. We organize special sessions and Town Halls at each AAS meeting, and our members have contributed extensively to the organization of international meetings on the status of women in astronomy.