Skip to main content



The AIA and the SCS and their members seek to create an atmosphere at their Annual Meeting in which participants may learn, network, and converse with colleagues in an environment of mutual respect. The AIA and SCS do not seek to limit the areas of inquiry of their members or to curtail robust scholarly debate, rather, the aim is to promote critical and open inquiry free of personal harassment, prejudice, and aggression. Everyone who attends the Annual Meeting is entitled to an experience free from harassment, as well as any kind of bullying or intimidation.


Attendees agree that they will not record any sessions or events at the virtual annual meeting. Attendees also agree to abide by the rules of conduct stated by session organizers and presiders at the start of each session. This is particularly important in interactive sessions such as roundtables, workshops, and seminars in which attendees may have, or be granted by session hosts, access to the video and audio streams to participate in the session. Session hosts reserve the right to remove from a session any attendee who disrupts a session by not observing session rules.


Harassment under this Policy refers to any behavior by an individual or group that contributes to a hostile, intimidating, and/or unwelcoming environment, such as stalking, solicitation, bullying, hostility, or abuse based on age, disability, ethnicity, gender expression, gender identity, institutional affiliation, marital status, national origin, race, religion, sex, sexual orientation, socio-economic status, military status, ancestry, or any other category. Such conduct is harmful, disrespectful, and unprofessional.

Harassment includes sexual harassment, such as unwelcome sexual advances, or verbal or physical contact of a sexual nature. Examples of sexual harassment at a virtual meeting include, but are not limited to:

  • Any unwanted advances or solicitations made via text chat, audio, or video;
  • Sexually suggestive gestures or noise;
  • Offensive jokes, teasing, or innuendos directed at other conference participants that are offensive or objectionable to the recipient, or which cause the recipient or other participants discomfort or humiliation;
  • Any unwanted sexual behavior directed towards anyone in any medium.

The AIA and SCS have no tolerance for harassment of any kind in any setting. Harassment is unacceptable behavior and no Annual Meeting attendee should engage in harassment of any kind during the meeting.


All participants and attendees at the conference accept the obligation to treat everyone with respect and civility and to uphold the rights of all other participants and attendees, including AIA and SCS staff, temporary staff, contractors, and volunteers to be free from harassment.

Attendees should be aware that they are bound by the codes of conduct at their home institutions. This joint AIA and SCS policy, which is consistent with the professional ethics statements of both the AIA and the SCS, does not supersede institutional codes but is intended to reinforce their message.

Individuals who are currently or have been sanctioned for assault or harassment by an adjudicating institution (e.g., a university, court, or other recognized adjudicating body) will be barred from taking part in the AIA-SCS Annual Meeting and will have their registration revoked if they register. Appeals may be requested in the case of advance registration, but registrations that occur during the Annual Meeting will be revoked immediately. The AIA and SCS Executive Directors must approve revocation of any registrations. Any request for an appeal against revocation of advance registration should be sent to the AIA and SCS Executive Directors no later than three weeks prior to the meeting start date. Each appeal will be reviewed by the Executive Directors and the Presidents of both AIA and SCS. The Executive Directors will communicate appeals decisions in writing.


Annual Meeting attendees who experience or witness harassment as defined above, or who are aware that a conference participant is currently or has been sanctioned for assault or harassment by an adjudicating body, are encouraged to make contact during the conference with the Joint Annual Meeting Ombudsperson, who will be available for virtual meetings during the conference. The AIA and SCS will publicize procedures for contacting the Ombudsperson on their websites and on the virtual event platform. The Ombudsperson will have a dedicated email address for the duration of the Annual Meeting and the two months following the meeting.

The role of the Ombudsperson is to provide support to those who witness or have experienced harassment or feel unsafe for any reason at the Annual Meeting. The Ombudsperson may attempt informal resolution or mediation. The Ombudsperson will also advise on the formal complaints process described below; however, the Ombudsperson is not authorized to give legal advice, adjudicate cases, or remove any attendees from the conference. The Ombudsperson serves as liaison to the Joint AIA-SCS Rapid Response team. If warranted, the team members may recommend that the AIA and SCS Executive Directors notify an individual or individuals that they should no longer attend sessions, events, and meetings at the Annual Meeting currently in progress.

Formal complaints that require further investigation after the Annual Meeting may be submitted in writing to the Joint Annual Meeting Ombudsperson via email. The Ombudsperson will communicate complaints to the Joint AIA-SCS Harassment and Discrimination Committee.

Formal complaints should be specific as possible about how alleged behavior constitutes harassment as defined in the policy above. Complaints may also make reference to the AIA’s and SCS’s statements on professional ethics ( and Any report received will remain confidential to the maximum extent possible when the Joint AIA-SCS Harassment and Discrimination Committee considers and investigates the complaint.

The Committee may rule to dismiss a complaint if and only if the complaint falls outside the scope of the Annual Meeting policy or if the alleged incident is already subject to criminal or other investigation, including but not limited to Title IX proceedings. A dismissal of a complaint will be communicated in writing to the complainant by the co-chairs of the Committee. If the Committee does not dismiss the complaint, it will be shared with the accused party, who may elect to file a written response, which must be submitted within thirty (30) calendar days. The Committee, after reviewing statements by the complainant and the accused, and any documents or records provided to the Committee or otherwise reasonably available to it, may, depending on its findings, recommend no further action, a possible resolution via mediation, or a sanction of an individual or individuals. The Committee would recommend for approval any sanction to the governing boards of the AIA and/or SCS, depending on the membership status of the individual involved. The Committee co-chairs will communicate their findings, including any sanctions approved by the AIA or SCS governing boards, in writing to both parties.

This policy is based on the policy approved by the AIA Executive Committee on 8/27/19 and the SCS Board of Directors, 8/29/19 and has been updated for the virtual meeting in 2021.

Addendum to the Policy: Personnel

The AIA Executive Director can be contacted at The SCS Executive Director can be contacted at

Joint Annual Meeting Ombudsperson: Kathy Canul:

Joint AIA-SCS Rapid Response Team (active during the meeting):

Rebecca King, AIA Executive Director

Helen Cullyer, SCS Executive Director

Barbara Gold, SCS VP for Professional Matters

Thomas Tartaron, AIA VP for Research and Academic Affairs

(ex officio non-voting members of the team: SCS Director of Meetings, Cherane Ali; AIA Director of Marketing and Professional Services, Kevin Mullen; SCS Communications and Services Coordinator, Erik Shell; AIA Marketing & Communications Coordinator, Angela McNamara)

Joint AIA-SCS Harassment and Discrimination Committee (for formal complaints to be addressed after the meeting):

Rebecca King, AIA Executive Director

Helen Cullyer, SCS Executive Director

Ruth Scodel, SCS VP for Professional Matters (effective January 10, 2020)

Thomas Tartaron, AIA VP for Research and Academic Affairs

SCS representative appointed by the President

AIA representative appointed by the President