Diversity in Ecology

ESA Diversity Statement

The Ecological Society of America is dedicated to the science and study of ecology. The society welcomes and encourages participation by all individuals regardless of age, culture, ethnicity, gender identity or expression, national origin, physical or mental difference, politics, race, religion, sex, sexual orientation, socio-economic status, or subculture. We strive to cultivate a society built on mentorship, encouragement, tolerance and mutual respect, thereby engendering a welcoming environment for all. Ecologists believe in the need for interdisciplinary study, both in terms of disciplines and participants.  We believe in biodiversity both in terms of ecosystems and membership. We will vigorously and proactively reject prejudice and stereotyping wherever it is encountered in our profession. ESA further promotes diversity in all areas of activity, including fostering diversity in membership, leadership, committees, staff, outreach, public engagement, recruitment, and all other areas of societal activity.  Adopted November 2014

ESA Diversity Programs

Strategies for Ecology Education, Diversity and Sustainability (SEEDS)

SEEDS is ESA’s flagship award-winning education program. Its mission is to diversify and advance the ecology profession through opportunities that stimulate and nurture the interest of underrepresented students to participate, and to lead in ecology. Focused mainly at the undergraduate level, with extension services for communities, high schools, graduate students, and international collaborations, the SEEDS program promotes an ecology profession with wide representation to ensure environmental understanding and a sustainable future for all.



EcologyPlus: Where Diversity Meets Opportunity

EcologyPlus aims to connect diverse college students and early career scientists with timely and relevant career opportunities and a community of peers and professionals in ecology and related careers across all sectors.  EcologyPlus is both an alliance and an approach to integrate available partner programs that foster the participation of underrepresented minorities in a broad range of career pathways where ecology plays a role. EcologyPlus recognizes the need for diverse ecological expertise in a wide variety of fields.

This project is made possible with an award from the National Science Foundation through the NSF INCLUDES (Inclusion across the Nation of Communities of Learners of Underrepresented Discoverers in Engineering and Science) program.



Women and Minorities in Ecology (WAMIE) Committee Reports 
ESA established the Committee on Women and Minority Affairs in 1988. In 1991, it became a Standing Committee of the Society. This committee provides leadership and recommendations for ESA diversity initiatives.

» WAMIE II Report (2006) 
» WAMIE I Report (1993)
» Report of the Standing Committee [ESA Bulletin]  (1992)

Profiles of Ecologists Report
This report was the result of a 2005 survey of the ESA membership to: (1) determine the pattern of graduate degrees in ecology earned; (2) determine ethnicity and gender composition in the field; (3) catalog the nation’s environmental science capabilities; and (4) analyze current patterns of employment.

ESA Community

Black Ecologists 
Contact: Senay Yitbarek
Email: senay@berkeley.edu

Environmental Justice 
The EJ Section promotes the engagement of ecologists in addressing environmental injustice issues through education, research and outreach.
Contact: Charlie Nilon
Email: NilonC@missouri.edu

Inclusive Ecology 

The Inclusive Ecology section encourages and supports ecologists from underrepresented groups, as well as supporting all ecologists striving to make ecology more inclusive through their research, teaching, outreach, and engagement with policymakers ,managers, and other ecologists.
Contact: Kennedy “Ned” F. Rubert-Nason, Ph.D.
Email: rubert@russell.wisc.edu

Traditional Ecological Knowledge (TEK) Section
The TEK Section promotes the understanding, discussion, and respectful use of traditional ecological knowledge.
Contact: Tim Nuttle
Email: tnuttle@cecinc.com