“context is key, we must take this opportunity to look to “SHTEM” and integrate the humanities into science and take all voices into account”
A brilliant conversation with Jayshree about the importance of science and the role of business in bringing science to a more diverse population. We discuss how to bring more diversity to STEM, and continue to build more powerful communities for innovation and solving world problems more effectively. We dive in and out of the contents of her two books in the Heart of Science series to look at the different contexts and realities of the state of science and STEM.
Science and the art of storytelling are intertwined – solving critical problems requires meaningful engagement, critical thinking, empathetic listening, collaborative and effective communication and diversity of thought. If we were to mix science and storytelling more intentionally it would attract a more diverse population.
STEM subjects focus on certainty and a quest for answers and seek to analyse, while humanities focus on dealing with uncertainty and a focus on questions, and can help us synthesise. We must navigate with clarity, inclusivity, action and responsibility and have a plan: sustainable innovation calls on us to change our models of leadership and business and consider the legacy perspective, invoking more collaboration, trust and alignment.
Jayshree shares her experience, thought leadership and vision both from her career in science and business, and her continuing advocacy for diversity in STEM.
The main insights you’ll get from this episode are :
– For someone with an interest in research, experimentation, and human impact, as well as a passion for the context of science, 3M provides the requisite ingredients of a culture of empowerment, an emphasis on collaboration and the context of improving lives.
– Science is invisible, underappreciated, and taken for granted – people don’t realise the impact it has on their lives; a positive perception of science is required to avoid a negative impact on society.
– Social science research is also necessary to understand people and shape an advocacy strategy for science, i.e. communication with a relatable context (in the form of storytelling).
– Science and the art of storytelling are intertwined – solving critical problems requires meaningful engagement, critical thinking, empathetic listening, collaborative and effective communication and diversity of thought.
– There has been little progress in terms of diversity in STEM and it is time to reengineer the notions around engineering to prevent the negative consequences if we fail to attract more girls to science.
– ‘STEAM’ (shattering stereotypes, telling the whole-sum story of science, exposure and environment, allies and advocates, metrics and measures) cleaning will hopefully help girls see themselves as scientists.
– STEM is only possible thanks to Sponsors, Teachers, Enthusiasts and Mentors and diverse VOICES – Volunteering, Organising, Inspiring, Championing, Engaging – intentionally amplify ideas and take the initiative.
– 3M runs initiatives to promote diversity in STEM by encouraging education through programmes and funding, creating equity in communities and economic equity for underrepresented individuals.
– SHTEM is the integration of humanity in STEM: humanity focuses on uncertainty and the drive for questions whereas STEM focuses on certainty and the quest for answers; COVID was a prime example of science communication (for the public).
– Skilled tradespeople make the world go round, these trades are based on STEM and a shortage of skilled workers will affect the whole world – the public must be educated, inspired and understand how society can be changed.
– Helpful information can be found in Jayshree’s books, The Heart of Science: Engineering Footprints, Fingerprints and Imprints, which offers points to ponder, and The Heart of Science: Engineering Fine Print, which examines feelings, identities, needs and emotions (FINE) to understand how humans can manage change and take meaningful action.
– We must all work individually alongside organisations to change the culture by jettisoning implicit biases; delving into our identities; and being aware of entrenched beliefs to create more honesty, authenticity, diversity, equity and transparency.
– More inclusive workspaces make economic, moral and ethical sense and diversity warrants equity – creating a more diverse, robust workforce entails challenging existing constructs, dismantling archetypes and shattering stereotypes.
– Leaders must ‘lead from their rung of the ladder’, be aware of their own privilege and break SILOS (social circles and spheres, informal and formal connections, local community and culture, opportunity creation and context, societal constructs and classifications).
– CAPE (of Good Hope for the future): commit to sustainable development goals with a long-term perspective, advocate for science with a societal perspective, promote representation with a global perspective, and empower innovation with an inclusive perspective.
– We must navigate with clarity, inclusivity, action and responsibility and have a plan: sustainable innovation calls on us to change our models of leadership and business and consider the legacy perspective, invoking more collaboration, trust and alignment.
– LAPS – leadership and legacy in organisations, allyship and advocacy across the value chain, partnership and primacy with the public, stewardship and diplomacy with the ecosystem.
– Sustainability is a team sport and ties in with purpose; innovation is a lifesaver for business, inspiration is the lifeblood of innovation and purpose is the lifeline for inspiration.
Find out more about Jayshree’s work here :
LinkedIn: Jayshree Seth (https://www.linkedin.com/in/jayshree-seth-6287b45/)
Books available on Amazon: