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Microbes and Social Equity Symposium, Session 4: Community Engagement and Collaboration (online)

July 21, 2022 @ 12:20 pm - 4:00 pm

Symposium: This symposium will focus on developing research skills to create transformative research, including context-aware experimental designs, engaging community stakeholders as research partners, writing transdisciplinary papers, translating research into policy, and creating curriculum which melds microbes and social equity.

Session: Due to the interconnectedness of microbial processes and social justice, many types of microbial research could benefit from closer collaborations with communities impacted directly by the public health, environmental and climate justice implications of microbiomes. Some styles of microbiome research would yield more positive outcomes if the collaboration was built around mutual long-term goals, instead of specific projects, and if it was initiated during project conceptualization instead of after the project has been designed. This session will explore different styles of interdisciplinary collaborations centered on community needs, such as community advisory boards, community partnerships, community-led research design, and how to implement this into microbiome research.

1. Dr. Pajau (PJ) Vangay, Ph.D. Science Community Manager, National Microbiome Data Collaborative, Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory. “Advancing microbiome science, in partnership with communities”

2. Dr. Arbor Quist, Ph.D., Postdoctoral Fellow in Environmental Justice & Community-Driven Epidemiology at the University of Southern California.

3. Dr. Rosie Alegado, Ph.D., Associate Professor of Oceanography & Sea Grant College Program at University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa

4. Dr. Aidee Guzman, Ph.D., NSF and UC Chancellor’s Postdoctoral Fellow in the Department of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology at UC Irvine.

12:30–14:15 Introduction and Speakers
14:15–14:30 Break
14:30–6:00 Breakout room discussions based on skills development, in smaller groups (
Topics in development)

Register here:

Event sponsored by UMaine Institute of Medicine