LSST Workplace Culture and Inclusion

LSST Workplace Culture and Inclusion

December 16, 2016AURA’s Workforce and Diversity Committee (WDC) met in Tucson last week, bringing together Human Resources representatives, external experts, and the Diversity Advocates at each of the five AURA center: Gemini, LSST, NOAO, NSO, and STScI.  The committee works on issues related to building and maintaining a “fully diverse workforce where individuals feel genuinely empowered to bring their diverse perspectives into the ongoing creation of ideas and approaches.” 

LSST reported on three goals previously identified as valuable to the LSST Project and benefitting from expertise within the WDC:

  1. Develop and maintain an inclusive, positive workforce culture.
  2. Increase diversity within the distributed LSST workforce.
  3. Improve internal project communication. 

For each goal, strategies have been developed and activities undertaken, with metrics to measure progress.  Activities, by goal, include:

  1. Determining a baseline measure of project culture and development of the LSST Ombudsperson program.
  2. Working to increase the diversity of all aspects of the hiring process including hiring committees and applicant pools.
  3. Project-wide efforts to tackle inefficiencies and complexities of our internal communications effort including meetings.

For more information on these efforts contact LSST Diversity Advocate Suzanne Jacoby (, or Deputy Director Beth Willman (

Financial support for Rubin Observatory comes from the National Science Foundation (NSF) through Cooperative Support Agreement No. 1202910, the Department of Energy (DOE) Office of Science under Contract No. DE-AC02-76SF00515, and private funding raised by the LSST Corporation. The NSF-funded Rubin Observatory Project Office for construction was established as an operating center under management of the Association of Universities for Research in Astronomy (AURA).  The DOE-funded effort to build the the Rubin Observatory LSST Camera (LSSTCam) is managed by the SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory (SLAC).
The National Science Foundation (NSF) is an independent federal agency created by Congress in 1950 to promote the progress of science. NSF supports basic research and people to create knowledge that transforms the future.
NSF and DOE will continue to support Rubin Observatory in its Operations phase. They will also provide support for scientific research with LSST data.   

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