ASA Activities Conduct Policy

Approved November 30, 2018 by ASA Board of Directors

The American Statistical Association (ASA) is committed to providing an atmosphere in which personal respect and intellectual growth are valued and the free expression and exchange of ideas are encouraged. Consistent with this commitment, it is the policy of the ASA that all participants in ASA activities enjoy a welcoming environment free from unlawful discrimination, harassment, and retaliation. We strive to be a community that welcomes and supports people of all backgrounds and identities. This includes, but is not limited to, members of any race, ethnicity, culture, national origin, color, immigration status, social and economic class, educational level, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity and expression, age, size, family status, political belief, religion, and mental and physical ability.

All participants—including, but not limited to, attendees, statisticians, students, registered guests, staff, contractors, and exhibitors—in any ASA meeting or other activity—whether official or unofficial—agree to comply with all rules and conditions of the activities. Your registration for or attendance at any ASA event indicates your agreement to abide by this policy and its terms.

Expected Behavior

  • Model and support the norms of professional respect necessary to promote the conditions for healthy exchange of scientific ideas.
  • Speak and conduct yourself professionally; do not insult or disparage other participants.
  • Be conscious of hierarchical structures in the ASA community, specifically the existence of stark power differentials between junior and senior statisticians—noting that fear of retaliation from senior statisticians can make it difficult for junior statisticians to express discomfort, rebuff unwelcome advances, and report violations of the conduct policy.
  • Be sensitive to body language and other non-verbal signals and respond respectfully.

Unacceptable Behavior

  • Violent threats or language directed against another person
  • Discriminatory jokes and language
  • Inclusion of unnecessary sexually explicit, violent, or otherwise sensitive materials in presentations
  • Posting (or threatening to post), without permission, other people’s personally identifying information online, including on social networking sites
  • Personal insults including, but not limited to, those using racist, sexist, homophobic, or xenophobic terms
  • Unwelcome solicitation of emotional or physical intimacy such as sexual advances; propositions; sexual flirtations; sexually-related touching; and graphic gestures or comments about sex or another person’s dress, body, or sexual activities
  • Advocating for, encouraging, or dismissing the severity of any of the above behaviors.

Consequences of Unacceptable Behavior

At the ASA’s sole discretion, unacceptable behavior may result in removal from or denial of access to meeting facilities or activities, without refund of any applicable registration fees or costs. In addition, the ASA reserves the right to report violations to an individual’s employer or institution or to a law-enforcement agency. Those engaging in unacceptable behavior may also be banned from future ASA activities or face additional penalties.

What to Do if You Witness or Are Subject to Unacceptable Behavior

If you are being harassed, notice that someone else is being harassed, or have any other concerns relating to harassment, please contact the conference ombuds service. If you witness potential harm to a conference participant, be proactive in helping to mitigate or avoid that harm; if you see or hear something that concerns you, please say something. ProActive ReSolutions will provide independent, confidential ombuds services during the Joint Statistical Meetings. A ProActive ombuds will be available to provide advice and consultation to attendees regarding any concerns relating to fairness, equity, or respect that may arise during JSM. If you would like to consult with the ProActive ombuds during JSM, please email

Process for Adjudicating Reports of Misconduct

The ASA will contract with an independent entity to manage and adjudicate reported violations of the conduct policy.

 Note: This Code of Conduct may be revised at any time by The American Statistical Association and its terms are non-negotiable.