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Frontiers community engagement update – spring 2023 

We take a moment to reflect on the information, resources, and actions taken over the past several months towards promoting longer, more prosperous lives on a healthier planet. 

Photo credit: Frontiers

Women in Science 

Now in its third year, our Women in Science blog continues to serve as a platform to give women researchers a voice within their communities. It is a place for them to share their career progressions and achievements in their respective disciplines, speak about the challenges on the way, while also sharing advice for future generations of researchers. This year, the blog is highlighting the contributions these women make to the United Nations Sustainability Development Goals. Over the past several months, readers have explored playful pedagogies within the context of global education (SDG 4), health equity and women’s health (SDG 5), evolutionary biology and the conservation of amphibians (SDG 15), and accessibility to clean water as part of sustainable agriculture (SDG 6). 

Frontiers’ Volunteers 

The year began with a review of the impact Frontons had made through their volunteer efforts over the course of 2022. The thinking globally, acting locally blog post took a closer look at how our colleagues contributed to their local communities around the world in a meaningful and sustainable way during their combined 662 hours spent volunteering. Part of this recap included the Holiday Wishes initiative, which took place for the third time in 2022 and saw over 200 items donated to those in need by Frontons in our London, Lausanne, and Madrid offices. 

The momentum to give back through volunteering efforts carried over into the new year with several friendly competitions providing a strong start. These competitions were designed to challenge Frontons to focus on the wellbeing of the environment and themselves. During the month of February, Frontiers’ Sustainability Network hosted a fashion detox, encouraging participants to forego buying new clothing and find way to repurpose or swap the items they already owned. At the same time, the production team challenged themselves to cover over 1,900 kilometers’ worth of activity and raised £600 in funds for a UK-based mental health organization, Mind, to highlight the importance of physical and mental wellbeing. Their experiences and the outcome of these competitions are covered in the latest Frontiers’ volunteers post

Frontiers Sustainability Network and doughnut economics 

A catalyst for the Sustainability Network’s February Fashion Detox was a guest speaker event held at the beginning of the year. Zohar Ianovici, development economist at The World Bank and cofounder of the Israel Doughnut Economics Community, spoke to Frontons about the circular economy and the doughnut economics framework founded by Kate Raworth. As one of the aims of the Sustainability Network, participants were then able to apply what they learned from the talk to their daily lives by joining the fashion detox challenge. 

Frontiers’ Sustainability Network is an employee-run, volunteer-based initiative aimed at encouraging sustainable practices at both the individual and corporate level. Led by Frontons from across various departments, the network brings awareness to key issues that everyone faces and advocates for choices in line with Frontiers’ larger mission for enabling healthy lives on a healthy planet. The Sustainability Network organizes regular activities throughout the year, such as a guest speaker series, environmentally conscious events, and a monthly newsletter with helpful resources.  

Earthquake donation 

Following the 7.8-magnitude earthquake that caused widespread damage across Turkey and northern Syria, Frontons came together to contribute to relief efforts. For Beccy Gamble, a review operations specialist at Frontiers, the news was too close for comfort as her husband’s family is from Syria. Always one to give back, Beccy began brainstorming ways to help, ultimately deciding on a charity haircut through The Little Princess Trust with all proceeds going to the International Medical Corps. The organization is a preeminent first responder, providing emergency relief to those struck by conflict, disaster, and disease – no matter the location. 

“I’ve had a temporary form of alopecia a couple of times and, once my hair grows back, I donate it. This was a small, yet meaningful, way to support my husband, his family, and those affected. Additionally, my husband was diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes, and we thought of the difficulties people were facing accessing medications following the earthquake. The International Medical Corps provides emergency medical services to help with these exact situations, so it was a natural choice,” explains Beccy. 

Through Frontiers’ partnership with Alaya, it was possible to set up a dedicated webpage where Frontons could learn more about Beccy’s fundraiser and pledge their support. When the time came, Beccy cut her hair after four years’ worth of growth and donated 35 centimeters of hair to create wigs for children experiencing hair loss. Frontiers matched the funds raised, and more than CHF 2,700 was donated to the International Medical Corps. 

Frontiers also collected and matched funds to donate over CHF 7,200 to Direct Relief. Direct Relief is a humanitarian aid organization active in more than 80 countries with the mission to improve the health and lives of people affected by poverty or emergencies – without regard to politics, religion, or ability to pay. The money raised went towards search and rescue efforts, including AKUT, the leading search and rescue team in Turkey.  

About Frontiers     

Frontiers is the 3rd most-cited and 6th largest research publisher. We publish groundbreaking discoveries by the world’s top experts. Scientists empower society and our mission is to accelerate scientific discovery by making science open. We place the researcher at the center of everything we do and enable the research community to develop the solutions we need to live healthy lives on a healthy planet. Featuring custom-built technology, artificial intelligence, and rigorous quality standards, our research articles have been viewed more than 2.4 billion times, reflecting the power of research that is open for all.  

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