Code of Conduct

As noted in the by-laws (Article XV), all BGA members and meeting attendees are expected to adhere to the BGA code of conduct:

BGA Conduct Policy

It is the policy of the Behavior Genetics Association (BGA) that all participants, including attendees, vendors, volunteers, and all other stakeholders at BGA meetings and related events will conduct themselves in a professional manner that is welcoming to all participants and free from any form of discrimination, harassment, or retaliation. Membership in the BGA is a benefit, not a right, and the association reserves the right to evaluate anyone’s standing as a member.

Participants will treat each other with respect and consideration to create a collegial, inclusive, and professional environment at BGA Meetings. Creating a supportive environment to enable scientific discourse at BGA meetings is the responsibility of all participants.

Participants will avoid any inappropriate actions or statements based on individual characteristics such as age, race, ethnicity, sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, marital status, nationality, political affiliation, ability status, educational background, religious affiliation, or any other characteristic protected by law. Like many other organizations, the BGA supports the diversity and inclusion of all individuals and groups in scientific research. For example, we encourage and support the respectful discussion of analyses that include variables such as age, ancestry/race/ethnicity, sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, marital status, nationality, political affiliation, ability status, religious affiliation, and educational background.

However, unprofessional, disruptive, or harassing behavior of any kind (i.e., whether targeting an individual or group) will not be tolerated. According to the APA, sexual harassment is sexual solicitation, physical advances, or verbal or nonverbal conduct that is sexual in nature, and that either (1) is unwelcome, is offensive, or creates a hostile workplace or educational environment, and the scientist knows or is told this or (2) is sufficiently severe or intense to be abusive to a reasonable person in the context. Harassment can consist of a single intense or severe act or of multiple persistent or pervasive acts.

Violations of this code of conduct policy should be reported by the people involved or their representatives to any member of the BGA DEI Committee. Instances of misconduct will be investigated by the DEI Committee, who will review the complaint, interview the person about whom the complaint is made, along with any other pertinent witnesses, and determine appropriate sanction(s), if any. Sanctions may include, but are not limited to: recommendation for training in professional conduct, mediation, loss of participation in activities, or loss of membership.

Decisions of the DEI Committee can be appealed by either party to the Board of Directors, which makes the final decision. Members of either committee who are in conflict will recuse themselves from the review. All deliberations and conclusions of these committees, as well as information about incidents or individuals, will remain confidential, although information may be disclosed if required by law.

This policy covers conduct of BGA members beginning at the annual meeting in 2018.