We welcome Robin Haw as our newest member to the ISB EC. Nicole Vasilevsky and Rama Balakrishnan are returning for their second term.
Our new Chair/Secretary/Treasurer are as follows:
Thanks to Sylvain Poux for your years of service; our outgoing EC member and Treasurer (EC member 2014-2020, Treasurer 2018-2020). Thanks to Sandra Orchard, our outgoing chair (Chair 2018-2020; Sandra will continue on the EC for another year).
Please click here for the composition of the subcommittees. Please note, the Equity, Diversity and Inclusion subcommittee is open to all members, if you would like to join, please reply to this email.
2020 has been quite a year with COVID, quarantines, the Black Lives Matter movement, the US election and more. We feel optimistic about the year to come and we want to serve our community as best we can.
As part of the Biocuration 2020 conference we had received excellent workshop proposals from several groups. Since the cancellation of the meeting we have been working with interested workshop organizers to bring this part of the conference online. We are excited to announce that we now have 3 workshops scheduled for the fall:
September 24, 9am PT, 12pm ET, 5pm CET – Biocompute Objects: Methods for communicating provenance of data and analysis
Organizers: Charles Hadley King, Raja Mazumder, Jonathon Keeney; George Washington University
There is a Slack workspace set up to facilitate communication between organizers and participants. If you are interested in attending any of these workshops please email biocuration2020 @ gmail.com and we will send you an invite to the Slack workspace.
The election of the new International Society for Biocuration Executive Committee (ISB EC) will be held from September 27 – October 04, 2020.
The list of 7 candidates for 2020 can be viewed here.
The Executive Committee is composed of nine (9) members, each with a 3-year term. Being a member of the Executive Committee is a great way to become directly involved with the work of our society, and contribute to the decisions that are taken on behalf of the biocuration community. We would like to encourage all members interested in running for election to get involved in the process.
Serving on the ISB EC minimally involves attending monthly (1 hour) teleconference meetings, following up on any action items from meetings, and promoting the ISB’s activity to members and non-members. Examples of activities performed by EC members include reviewing micro-grant submissions, preparing call for participation for hosting Biocuration meetings, preparing materials for the ISB election, monitoring ISB mail and maintaining the website. There are specific positions such as Chair, Secretary and Treasurer that will require a larger time commitment, as they will be in charge of leading the steps of the EC and by extension the membership.
3 positions on the Executive Committee are up for election in 2020/2021. These positions are currently held by Nicole Vasilevsky, Rama Balakrishnan and Sylvain Poux. Nicole and Rama can re-stand for election. (The current ISB EC members are here.)
2020 Electoral Process
A) The Nominating Committee:
A Nominating Committee (NC) has been formed to oversee the electoral process, to review applications, and establish the final list of candidates. We are very grateful for their assistance with the execution of this election. The members of the 2020 Nominating Committee are TBD.
B) Instructions to Candidates:
If you would like to run for a position on the Executive Committee, you must first register your intent with the NC by emailing email@example.com
Please fill out this form by 28 August 2020, which includes a ‘statement of intent‘, a brief biographical sketch, and a ‘conflict of interests‘ statement describing any activities, memberships of other associations, editorial positions on journals, etc. (Please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org if you are unable to access this form.)
Nominations will be received until 28 August 2020.
The NC will review all candidacies and share their selections with the ISB Executive Committee by 14 September 2020.
Candidates must be announced to the membership and on website (with letters of intent) by 21 September 2020.
Voting will take place online over the course of one week from 27 September – 04 October 2020. (Further details about the voting process will be shared soon). Sue Bello will act as election officer.
Only paying members* with registration fees cleared on or before 21 September 2020 will be allowed to vote. If you pay your registration via bank transfer, please allow at least 2-3 working days for the payment to be processed.
*Note – please contact us at email@example.com if you have issues with registering or renewing your membership. Known issues exist with our membership payment system.
The Nominating Committee is looking forward to receiving your applications!
In response to recent events related to racism and injustice, most recently in the United States, but still present everywhere in the world, and in support of the Black Lives Matter movement. The ISB is a society devoted to fostering diversity, equity, and inclusion in the scientific enterprise and in society as a whole. We unequivocally sustain and believe that Black Lives Matter.
Like all STEM organisations, we cannot ignore both the legacy of racism, especially in the life sciences, and the reality of discrimination in our institutions and workplaces. In the specific case of our membership, we are aware that discrimination is present in our field, and it is often reflected in a lack of recognition, defined career-tracks, or opportunties for advancement for people invested in biocuration.
What can we do? The ISB EDI committee was created in response to a necessary discussion about sexism, and we were aware from the start of the necessity of tackling other forms of discrimination and intersectionality. We must accelerate our current efforts, and go beyond them.
We have included an optional question on ethnicity in our membership and conference registration forms so we can assess the diversity of our community, and inform plans for how to attract and retain members from underrepresented groups
We make available several funding opportunities for our members, the awarding of which aims to be free of bias, including:
Travel fellowships are available to support travel to the annual Biocuration Conference
We are currently working on inviting champions of equity, diversity, and inclusion from a variety of institutions to present webinars on the subject of EDI; to share with us more on how the subject is addressed at their institutions and to advise ISB members on what we can do to make a difference
We will continue to review and revise, where necessary, our Code of Ethics and Professional Conduct to ensure that we represent the values and beliefs of all of our community
We welcome you to get in touch with any questions, concerns or suggestions. All members of our community are welcome to participate in the EDI Committee. Please email us at: firstname.lastname@example.org.
We are pleased to announce an exciting new scholarship opportunity! Scholarships are now available for the Postgraduate Certificate in Biocuration run by the Institute of Continuing Education (ICE) at the University of Cambridge. The course runs from September 23, 2020 to April 16, 2021.
In lieu of hosting a workshop at the Biocuration2020 conference, the Equality, Diversity and Inclusion subcommittee of the International Society for Biocuration will host a 30-minute webinar that will be open to the Biocuration community.
Title: Improving Equality, Diversity, and Inclusion (EDI) in Biocuration When: Monday, 11th May Time: 8.30-9.00am PT/4.30-5.00pm BST Where: Zoom (details to be sent before the webinar – please register below) Host: The EDI subcommittee of the ISB Speakers: Nicole Vasilevsky (Oregon Health & Science University, Portland, Oregon, USA), Rachael Huntley (SciBite, Cambridge, UK), Moni Munoz-Torres (Oregon State University, Berkeley, CA, USA)
The webinar outline is as follows:
Introduction to the EDI subcommittee
Overview of work to date: the ISB conference Code of Conduct, recommendations for conference organizers & analysis of the ISB conference gender distributions over the past 10 years
Sli.do discussion/brainstorm for what our goals should be for the upcoming year.