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SHOT Respectful Behavior Policy

As historians, we self-consciously identify with a set of shared professional values that guide our activities and inform our judgments. Our collective understanding of the past is nourished by balancing fair and honest criticism with tolerance and openness to differing ideas. Critical exchanges are productive only in a context of trust and mutual respect in which participants feel free to express their views without fear of intimidation, harassment or derision. This crucial insight defines what we mean by professional conduct. SHOT believes in and encourages freedom of expression and vigorous debate. SHOT also insists on civility and respect.

These norms of professional conduct are constitutive of our community in all contexts in which we act as scholars. These contexts include, but are not restricted to, face-to-face interactions, correspondence, including email, and the use of social media. SHOT welcomes the advent of multiple new sites and spaces for the sharing of information, ideas, and arguments that advance the intellectual development of our field of study. It deplores the opportunities sometimes created by those same sites and spaces for violating the core values of our profession. SHOT will not tolerate behavior in any context that is discriminatory, intimidating, threatening, or harassing.

Individuals who persist with discriminatory, intimidating, threatening, or harassing behavior, despite requests to cease doing so, cannot expect to obtain the benefits of membership in a community whose canons of professional behavior they refuse to accept. If two-thirds of the SHOT Executive Council so agree, after careful consideration, they can be denied access to SHOT events, sites and spaces, as well as to SHOT financial support.

For a general statement on the norms that shape the professional conduct of historians see, for example the statement of the American Historical Association (AHA).
For non-discrimination and anti-harassment standards see, for example, the statement of History Science Society (HSS).