Li Lab

Quantitative Ecology in a Changing World



Code of conduct

This is a working document created to establish best practices for lab interactions and culture. The goal is to clearly lay out my expectations for behavior within the lab in an effort to encourage an inclusive lab culture.

If you have suggestions for this document – whether you are inside the lab or not – feel free to suggest them by filing an issue or by issuing a pull request at this repository.

Science is tough, and it’s easy to get down about the barrage of rejections or challenges. However, it’s also pretty great, and the list below is designed to make sure it has the potential to be great for everyone.

You are welcome in this lab

The lab is dedicated to creating a safe environment where harassment and other forms of intimidation are not allowed. A safe environment also means that there is zero tolerance for any form of discrimination, including age, disability, appearance, sexual orientation, race, nationality, or religion (or lack thereof). You are encouraged to share your perspective. Everyone’s perspective is valuable and should be listened to equally and respectfully. Discussions are encouraged, so long as they adhere to considerate language. We also are committed to diversity, equity and inclusion and strive to achieve these in the lab. Not only is everyone welcome to work in the lab if they follow basic guidelines, we actively seek to build a group that is diverse among multiple dimensions.

General rules of conduct

  • Be kind to yourself. Be mindful of your limits, and do not exhaust yourself.

  • Be kind to others. Do not insult or put down other contributors.

  • Behave professionally. Remember that harassment and sexist, racist, or exclusionary jokes are not appropriate.

  • Please make an effort to make an inclusive environment for everyone. Give everyone a chance to talk and an opportunity to contribute.

  • All communication - online and in person - should be appropriate for a professional audience including people of many different backgrounds. Sexual or discriminatory language and imagery is not appropriate at any time.

How to handle an issue

This is a tricky one, but it doesn’t have to be. My door will always be open, as well as my email inbox. Lab members are encouraged to talk to me about any issues. All communication will be treated as confidential.

However, if lab members do not feel comfortable discussing issues with me or people within the lab, LSU offers conflict resolution through the Office of the Ombudsperson.

Working hours

Researchers in our lab are expected to be present in the lab from 9am - 5pm. However, this is flexible depending on the personal schedules of lab members. The idea is that in order to foster communication and interaction among lab members, having people together in the lab during the workday is useful. Further, it allows a slightly more clear separation between work time and personal time. I am not the master of work-life balance by any means, but treating research like a job with clear hours has helped me draw boundaries in the allocation of my time. That being said, if lab members feel that they cannot abide by the 9-5 schedule, they are encouraged to come talk to me.

I expect everyone in the lab to create a weekly planning Google Doc and share it with me. Within this document, each of us should list what we have done this week and what we plan to do (dodable actions) next week. This file will also serve as an agenda for our one-to-one weekly meetings.

Lab space

The lab space belongs to everyone. I expect that lab members will respect the space and other members using this space. As a member of the lab, I will ensure that you have access to the resources you need to do your best science. This means that you will be issued a:

  • desk space
  • lab notebook

This list is not exhaustive.

We value collaboration and open science.

We support collaboration as a better model than competition within the lab and with colleagues at LSU and elsewhere. We are advocates of Open Science and reproducibility. Whenever possible, the data and software we generate is released under open licenses, a contribution we view as more important than simply churning out more papers (there may be cases for not sharing data openly immediately).

Latest version of this file can be found here.