UAI 2021 Code of Conduct

Purpose

We aim to foster a community and an environment that recognizes and respects the inherent worth of every person. Such an environment is essential for the open exchange of ideas, the freedom of thought and expression, and respectful scientific debate at the conference.

Responsibility

All participants---attendees, organizers, reviewers, speakers, sponsors, and volunteers at our conference, workshops, and conference-sponsored social events---are required to agree with this Code of Conduct both during the event and on official communication channels, including social media.

Sponsors are equally subject to this Code of Conduct. In particular, sponsors should not use images, activities, or other materials that are of a sexual, racial, or otherwise offensive nature. This code applies both to official sponsors as well as to any organization that uses the conference name as branding as part of its activities at or around the conference.

Organizers will enforce this code, and we expect cooperation from all participants to help ensure a safe and productive environment for everybody. Organizers reserve the right to cancel registrations because of misconduct.

Policy

The conference commits itself to providing an experience for all participants that is free from the following:

  • Harassment, bullying, and discrimination which includes but is not limited to:
    • Offensive comments related to personal characteristics like age, race, religion, ethnicity, gender (including transgender/gender identity/gender expression), sexual orientation, medical conditions, physical or intellectual disability, physical appearance, pregnancy, politics, national origin or ancestry.
    • Intimidation, personal attacks, harassment, and unnecessary disruption of talks or other conference events.
  • Inappropriate or unprofessional behavior that interferes with another participant's full participation including:
    • Sexual harassment, stalking, following, harassing photography or recording, inappropriate physical contact, unwelcome attention, public vulgar exchanges, derogatory name-calling, and diminutive characterizations.
    • Use of images, activities, or other materials that are of a sexual, racial, or otherwise offensive nature that may create an inappropriate or toxic environment.
    • Disorderly, boisterous, or disruptive conduct including fighting, coercion, theft, damage to property, or any mistreatment or non-businesslike behavior towards participants.
    • “Zoom bombing” or any virtual activity that detracts from the topic or the purpose of the program. This includes inappropriate remarks in chat areas. No advertising of any sort, including job postings, are permitted in presentation chat areas.
  • Misconduct including fabrication, falsification, or plagiarism.

This Code of Conduct applies to the actual meeting sites and conference venues where UAI is being conducted, including physical venues, online venues, and official virtual engagement platforms, including video, virtual streaming, and chat-based interactions. UAI will not actively monitor social media platforms, but will follow up on issues of harassment and violations of the code that occur on those platforms and are specifically related to UAI, if and when they are brought to our attention.

Action

Participants asked by any member of the community to stop any inappropriate behavior as defined herein are expected to comply immediately. The conference organizers may take further action as deemed appropriate, including: a formal or informal warning to the offender, expulsion from the conference with no refund, exclusion from submission to or participation in future UAI conferences, reporting the incident to the offender’s local institution or funding agencies, or reporting the incident to local authorities or law enforcement. A response of "just joking" is not acceptable. If action is taken, an appeals process will be made available.

Complaint reporting

The conference encourages all participants to immediately report any violations of the above policy to the program chairs and/or the general chairs. The case will be discussed among the program chairs, general chairs and members of the AUAI board, unless it is explicitly asked for that the case is handled differently. All complaints will be handled as confidentially as possible and information will be disclosed only as it is necessary to complete the investigation and bring the case to a resolution.

Reports made during the conference will be responded to within 24 hours; those at other times in less than two weeks. We are prepared and eager to help participants contact relevant help services, to escort them to a safe location, or to otherwise assist those experiencing harassment of any sort to feel safe for the duration of the conference. We gratefully accept feedback from the UAI community on our policy and actions.

Updated May 11th 2021
UAI 2021 Program Chairs and General Chairs

(Similar Codes of Conduct have been used by other conferences, such as UAI 2020, ICLR 2020, ICML 2020 and NeurIPS 2020. Parts of the current content have been taken from these documents.)