BITSS Event Code of Conduct

Version 2.0, Updated December 2020

This Code of Conduct outlines expectations for all event attendees, including speakers, participants, and organizers, of any Berkeley Initiative for Transparency in the Social Sciences (BITSS) event, both online and in-person. It also details steps for reporting unacceptable behavior and outlines how BITSS staff will enforce this code.

All attendees have the right to a harassment-free event experience, regardless of their gender identity or expression, race, ethnicity, sexual orientation, disability status, age, physical appearance, religion (or lack thereof), nationality, education, career stage, discipline, or socioeconomic status. We do not tolerate harassment of event attendees in any form. Attendees violating these rules may be sanctioned or expelled at the discretion of the organizers.

Welcome and Unwelcome Behaviors

BITSS is dedicated to diversity, equity, inclusion, and the free expression of ideas. We seek to provide an environment in which diverse participants may learn, network, and enjoy the company of colleagues in an environment of mutual respect. We recognize a shared responsibility to create and hold that environment for the benefit of all. Some behaviors, therefore, are specifically prohibited:

  • Verbal comments that reinforce prejudice or discriminate based on the identities and statuses above
  • Sexual images in public spaces
  • Deliberate intimidation, stalking, or following
  • Harassing photography or recording
  • Sustained disruption of talks or other events
  • Inappropriate physical contact
  • Unwelcome sexual attention
  • Advocating for, or encouraging, any of the above behavior

Speakers—including presenters, organizers, and audience members—are asked to frame discussions as openly and inclusively as possible and to be aware of how language or images may be perceived by others. While critical examination of beliefs and viewpoints does not, by itself, constitute hostile conduct or harassment, speakers are encouraged to consider framing critical comments as questions as appropriate. Similarly, use of sexual imagery or language in the context of a professional discussion might not constitute hostile conduct or harassment if it is necessary to the topic of discussion and presented respectfully.

Guidelines Specific to Virtual Events

Note: these do not apply to webinars or livestreams where attendee interaction is limited, or other events.

  • Do not share virtual meeting links on social media or with other large groups. Attendance will be limited to those who have registered.
  • Do not share screenshots, audio recordings, or video captures without consent from all captured attendees.
  • We encourage all attendees to rename their virtual meeting names to include their preferred pronouns (e.g., “she/her”).


Attendees who are asked to stop any harassing behavior are expected to comply immediately. If an attendee engages in harassing behavior, organizers retain the right to take any actions to keep the event a welcoming environment for all attendees. This includes warning the offender or expulsion from the event.

Event organizers may take action to redress anything designed to, or with the clear impact of, disrupting the event or creating a hostile environment for any attendees. We expect attendees to follow these rules at all in-person and online event venues and related social activities.


If someone makes you or anyone else feel unsafe or unwelcome, or if you believe a harassment problem exists, please report it as soon as possible to any BITSS or CEGA staff member present. Harassment and other code of conduct violations reduce the value of our event for everyone. We want you to be happy and feel safe at our event. You can make a report either personally or anonymously.

Staff are required to relay reports to CEGA leadership. If the organizers may have a conflict of interest, please send reports to CEGA Leadership or members of the BITSS Advisory Board.

Anonymous Reporting

You can make an anonymous report using this form. We can’t follow up an anonymous report with you directly, but we will fully investigate it and take whatever action is necessary to prevent a recurrence.

Personal Reporting

You can make a personal report by speaking directly to an organizer (at in-person events, we can be identified by our name cards), using this form, or sending an email, private Zoom chat, or private Slack chat, as applicable. At least one of the following staff will be on hand at any BITSS event: Katie Hoeberling, Aleksandar Bogdanoski, Fernando Hoces de la Guardia, and Dustin Marshall. You can also email

When filing a report, please do your best to describe the incident or behavior, including the offender’s identity, timing, location, circumstances surrounding the incident, other people involved in the incident, if there are any public records available (emails, chats, images, etc.), whether the incident is ongoing, and any other information that can help us make an appropriate decision.

When taking a personal report, our staff will do their best to ensure you are safe and cannot be overheard. They may involve other event staff to ensure your report is managed properly. Once safe, we’ll ask you to tell us about what happened. This can be upsetting, but we’ll handle it as respectfully as possible, and you can bring someone to support you. You won’t be asked to confront anyone and we won’t tell anyone who you are. As a general rule, conference staff should not make any public statements about the behavior of individual people during or after the conference. We will revise this code and event organizing practices to prevent recurrences at future events.


The language in this code was adapted with permission from the Society for the Improvement of Psychological Science (SIPS) 2017 Conference Code of Conduct and the Invest in Open Infrastructure (IOI) Code of Conduct, which in turn are based on language provided by the Geek Feminism wiki and American Library Association.