A team of marine researchers and students, dedicated to protecting our planet and its ecosystems.
A manifesto for driving positive impact.
Diversity begets diversity.
The most diverse ecosystems are often the most productive. The same is true of scientific research groups. A diversity of genders (including non-binary), socio-economic backgrounds, ethnicities, attitudes, and perspectives provides a diversity of insights and outlooks that can generate ideas that may otherwise not have emerged. Encouraging diversity in a research lab therefore benefits all its members.
Ecological theory is good, but ecological theory coupled to application is better.
All scientists have a finite amount of time in which to conduct their research. Furthermore, ecological scientists have a moral imperative to contribute to solving the pressing global problems that we face. Ecological and biological theory, and the search for generalities, must underlie robust science, but research on ecological theory expands its significance greatly if applied to urgent present-day issues.
Your biggest impact is upon people.
A scientist’s reach in terms of their own direct research is invariably limited by hours in the day. It is multiplied enormously by those they work with – colleagues, students, the public, the media, and their everyday conversations.
Data and models should be in the service of the question, and not vice versa.
Do not get caught up in methods and lose sight of the original question. You should use models and data as tools, not as ends unto themselves.
The interstitial spaces are often the most important.
Important scientific advances have come from the unexpected collisions between disciplines that otherwise remain separated. Being open to the intersection of science in biology, sociology, economics, psychology, and other fields enables rapid adaptation and the development of new approaches. Bringing insights from fields outside of science entirely is even better.
Engender a sense of fun.
Many scientific advances have emerged from a sense of curiosity and playfulness. Have fun with your work!
A scientist cannot live by the H-Index alone.
Publications and citations remain, despite serious criticism, the primary way to evaluate scientific contributions. Yet the multiplicity of outputs and channels through which scientists produce and refine ideas and mean that despite this systemic focus, it is important not to lose sight of the importance of contributing to society in other ways.
Aesthetics are not just superficial.
Receptiveness to research depends on how it is presented. Recognizing this and presenting work in a way that enables simple messages, clarity of presentation, and attractive images helps to ensure that the full impact of our research is realized.
The Future of Marine Ecosystems (FOME) lab at Dalhousie University is dedicated to fostering a work environment that is diverse, equitable, respectful, and inclusive. We welcome and encourage the work and research of all students and scientists that are striving to protect our marine ecosystems regardless of their race, ethnicity, gender identity and expression, age, sexual orientation, religion or atheism, or disability. In particular, we welcome all minorities, both visible and invisible.
We are dedicated to leading professional (and personal) lives that are inclusive to all members of the Dalhousie University community. As part of our commitment, all members of the lab agree to foster an atmosphere of mutual respect, tolerant of scientific disagreement and debate when conducted in a respectful manner, but supportive of and finding value in our differences and diversity as people.
Mental Health Positive
The FOME lab is a Mental Health Positive Lab. Mental health issues are rife in academia. We need to tackle that through being open, understanding, supportive, and non-judgmental. At the FOME lab, we encourage open discussions of mental health and wellbeing, do not discriminate against those with mental health issues, provide a flexible working environment, and aim to support anyone coping with these challenges.
We acknowledge that our lab is located in Mi’kma’ki, the ancestral and traditional lands of the Mi’kmaq people. We recognize that we are all Treaty People under the Peace and Friendship Treaties signed in this Territory.