MSI Director’s Statement of Inclusion and Diversity



The Materials Science Institute (MSI) strives to be a welcoming place to all people. We categorically condemn systematic, institutionalized racism and the acts of state violence which have targeted the people of color in our community and in communities throughout this nation; violence which serves only to perpetuate existing racial injustice. Black lives matter.

MSI echoes the recent statement by the Society for Advancement of Chicanos/Hispanics and Native Americans in Science (SACNAS: in our commitment and dedication to advancing populations who have historically been excluded or marginalized in STEM fields:  We join their call to support Black communities and address racial injustice through our respective platforms.  Each one of us, as an ally to Black communities everywhere, has a continual duty to reflect on our institutions and demand accountability for their actions, dismantle those things which serve to oppress anyone based on their race, gender identity, creed, sex, ability, age, citizenship or sexual orientation, and reform them to be inclusive. We encourage the rest of the STEM community to join us in reflecting and reforming the ways in which we have inadvertently held up the systematic barriers which have barred people of color from full participation in the scientific community. This includes categorically rejecting the hateful and hurtful opinions expressed in a recently published and quickly retracted article in Angew. Chem. by a chemistry professor at Brock University.

We also recognize that the recent murders of George Floyd, Ahmaud Arbery and Breonna Taylor, coupled with the uneven impact of COVID-19, which has fallen particularly hard on Black, Latinx and Native communities, are sources of severe and legitimate additional stress to many people. Please be patient with both yourself and others as we engage in the self-care needed to handle the current harsh reality as well as the action we will take in the days, weeks, months, and years to come.


Darren Johnson
Director, Materials Science Institute
Bradshaw and Holzapfel Research Professor in Transformational Science and Mathematics