All posts by Dr. Shay-Akil

About Dr. Shay-Akil

Ecology, Evolution, & Conservation Biology, Ph.D. I study human evolutionary biology & genetics, race(ist) health disparities, philosophies of biology, Du Boisian sociology, and decolonial STS.

D.A.T.S. Scientific Ethics Statement & Reading Guide


“Who else but intellectuals are capable of discerning the role in history of explicit history-making decisions?  Who else is in a position to understand that now fate itself must be made a political issue.”  – C. Wright Mills The Politics of Responsibility (1969)

Science has played a prominent role in the tool kit of the powerful and in the exploitation of historically marginalized groups.  Intimately tied to the stories of innovation and intellectual curiosity are the human lives, societies, environments, and ecologies destroyed in the legendary tales of Euro-western colonialisms.  These are the facts of history, to attempt to escape those facts only contributes to reproducing our current political moment with more willful ignorance and inaction amongst injustice.

The conditions that have brought about this recent mobilization of scientists should not be ignored.  We must also understand that the very conditions threatening the funding of scientific scholarship has also been systematically targeting the lives of the historically vulnerable.  The marginalization of colonized peoples, women, LGBTQ*, and disabled scientists within the field, industry, and by fellow scientists are just some arenas where we can see the dynamics of science and social problems play out.  These problems will not go away if we simply add woman, Black, Queer and then stir.  These political problems within the science community and industry at large require that we as scientists take an internal (self-reflexive) look and re-evaluate the role(s) we have played historically and presently in society for us to prevent the same mistakes.

Continue reading D.A.T.S. Scientific Ethics Statement & Reading Guide

The People’s Science: A Call for Justice Based Ethics for the March for Science & Beyond


In the midst of rising overt fascism scientists have come together to organize a march on Washington in defense of science.  Science has been championed as the way forward but I caution that such a claim cannot ignore the importance of the larger history of science which reveals how science has and continues to be utilized to institutionalize and justify systemic injustice.  This conversation aims to look at the contributions that science, knowledge, and technology studies has to offer and the ethical responsibilities scientists have to those marginalized within the field as well as the commons outside of the scientific community.    Continue reading The People’s Science: A Call for Justice Based Ethics for the March for Science & Beyond