Fellow Story

Making science safe for everyone: Cronin and Zavaleta launch FieldFutures

Co-founded by Switzer Fellows Melissa Cronin and Erika Zavaleta, FieldFutures is a new organization that works to prevent harassment and assault in field settings. FieldFutures provides field teams, researchers, agencies, classes, and institutions with field-specific, evidence-based training to make science safe for everyone. Drawing on evidence from the scientific literature and decades of fieldwork experience, the FieldFutures team provides experiential interventions designed to empower participants to prevent, intervene in, and respond to identity-based harassment and assault in scientific and research field settings.

The group shared their origin story in a recent announcement:

"Four years ago, researchers at University of California, Santa Cruz, put their heads together to form the Building a Better Fieldwork Future Program (BBFF) at UC Santa Cruz, which developed an evidence-based training for researchers, scientists, and students to prevent harassment and assault in fieldwork. The program was a huge success, hosting hundreds of trainings on four continents, and training 50+ Certified BBFF trainers to expand the program.

The response from the fieldwork community was clear: people wanted more resources to help them prevent, intervene, and report harassment and assault in field settings. In fact, the demand for the training and further resources for building safe field settings was overwhelming!

As a way to meet this demand, we created FieldFutures, an independent organization that can scale up to reach new field settings, tailor our content, and more effectively build the movement for safe and inclusive field settings.

And don’t worry — BBFF at UC Santa Cruz still exists. The program now leads experimental and observational research evaluating the impact of intervention-based training on harassment prevention in field settings. BBFF will also continue to collaborate with FieldFutures to provide workshop content on the cutting edge of scientific evidence. Please get in touch with BBFF if you are a researcher interested in collaborating!"

Learn more on the FieldFutures website