Code of Conduct

Social and Affective Neuroscience Society (SANS): Code of Conduct

As a scientific community, SANS aims to provide a supportive space for scientific dialogue. We believe that scientific progress depends on the free exchange of ideas in an environment in which all participants are treated equitably and with respect. To this end, we are committed to fostering a safe and supportive community in which all scientists are able to contribute fully regardless of age, gender, race, ethnicity, national origin, religion, gender identity or expression, sexual orientation, disability or any other applicable basis proscribed by law. Harassment of any form has no place in a healthy scientific enterprise. We expect all of our members as well as other attendees at SANS- organized events to behave in ways that promote the supportive and productive exchange of ideas. This code of conduct outlines the expectations of the society for all conference attendees and participants, including all members, speakers, vendors, media representatives, commentators, exhibitors, sponsors and volunteers.

Expected Behavior

SANS expects event participants to communicate professionally and constructively, whether in person or over electronic media, handling dissent or disagreement with an open mind that is respectful towards alternate points of view. Likewise, when sharing information about the organization or any attendees, SANS expects participants to share responsibly and clearly distinguish individual opinion from fact.

Sexual Harassment and Other Forms of Harassment

SANS does not tolerate harassment in any form.

Sexual harassment refers to unwelcome sexual advances, requests for sexual favors, and other verbal or physical conduct of a sexual nature. Behavior and language that are welcome and acceptable to one person may be unwelcome and offensive to another. Consequently, individuals must use discretion to ensure that their words and actions communicate respect for others. This is especially important for those in positions of authority since individuals with lower rank or status may be reluctant to express their objections or discomfort regarding unwelcome behavior.

Sexual harassment does not refer to occasional compliments of a socially acceptable nature. It refers to behavior that is not welcome, is personally offensive, debilitates morale, and therefore, interferes with work effectiveness. The following are examples of behavior that, when unwelcome, may constitute sexual harassment: sexual flirtations, advances, or propositions; verbal comments or physical actions of a sexual nature; sexually degrading words used to describe an individual; a display of sexually suggestive objects or pictures; sexually explicit jokes; unnecessary touching.

Harassment on the basis of any other protected characteristic is also strictly prohibited. This conduct includes, but is not limited to the following: epithets, slurs, or negative stereotyping; threatening, intimidating, or hostile acts; denigrating jokes and display or circulation of written or graphic material that denigrates or shows hostility or aversion toward an individual or group.

What to do

If you are being harassed, notice that someone else is being harassed, or have any other concerns about an individual’s conduct, please contact the event organizers and/or a member of the SANS executive committee. SANS strongly supports an individual’s interest in confidentiality and will handle all reports with sensitivity. Information related to a report of harassment will only be disclosed on a “need to know basis” for the purposes of investigating and resolving the report. If an individual requests anonymity, honoring that request may limit SANS ability to respond fully to the reported behavior. SANS will carefully consider whether it can honor an individual’s request for anonymity while still providing a safe and nondiscriminatory environment for all.

Retaliation Is Prohibited

SANS will not tolerate any form of retaliation against persons who file a report or assist in any investigation of the report. Retaliation is a serious violation of the SANS code of conduct and, like harassment or discrimination itself, will be subject to serious consequences.

Consequences of Unacceptable Behavior

The event organizers and SANS leadership will determine the appropriate course of action in the case of a reported violation of this code of conduct. Possible actions include warning the offender, expulsion from the conference with no refund and/or banning the offender from future SANS events and activities. SANS reserves the right to notify an employer or home institution of a report of serious misconduct involving one of its employees, trainees, students or members and will cooperate with any external investigation into such a report.

All participants are expected to observe these rules and behaviors in all SANS sponsored venues, including online and social events.