Reinvigoration of a Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Committee at the Institute for Behavioral Genetics: Student-driven Progress


Extremist far-right ideologies, including scientifically inaccurate beliefs about race, are on the rise (Mieriņa and Koroļeva 2015; Youngblood 2020); individuals perpetuating such ideologies occasionally cite genetics research, including behavioral genetics research. This highlights the need for behavioral geneticists to actively confront extremist ideology and promote anti-racism. We emphasize the need for Diversity, Equity and Inclusion (DEI) committees within behavioral genetics institutions. DEI committees can lead to: greater awareness of ways in which behavioral genetics has been misused (historically and currently) to harm minoritized communities, increased discussions on conducting ethical behavioral genetics research, and increased collaboration for conducting more diverse behavioral genetics research. We discuss the activities and goals of the student-driven DEI committee at the Institute for Behavior Genetics (IBG). At the same time, we acknowledge we have a long way to go, both as a committee and as a field. Our committee is still in its early stages; we discuss challenges to increasing DEI in the field and present future goals for both IBG and the behavioral genetics community as we explore the process of implementing DEI work.

Behavior Genetics