Workshopping Our Values
What values define the way the Feminist Research Institute strives to operate? This was the question the FRI team explored this past year. We landed on three words: humility, collaboration and liberation. These emerged from a process modeling the methods of Max Liborion’s CLEAR Lab, an anti-colonial & feminist lab. We started by sharing stories about a moment that made us glad to be a part of FRI or another learning/activist/professional community. As each team member shared their stories, others took notes on the core values represented in those stories. We ended up with an inspiring list of over 50 values! Together, we worked to distill this list down to the most significant three through mural and mapping exercises. Finally, we collectively defined what these three values meant to us. We are thrilled to share the result of the team value workshop:
All knowledge is partial, and so the most accurate, equitable and impactful research requires humility. To be responsible researchers, we seek out knowledge beyond the academy. This calls us to practice sharing resources, power, and responsibilities. To practice humility requires compassion for where folks are coming from, suspending judgment, and being open to un-learning and re-learning. We listen and make room for growth during the process of collaborative research. We remain open to unexpected sources of knowledge that challenge our perspectives.
Our collaborative process bridges boundaries across traditional power and disciplinary structures. It requires that we commit to listening to, trusting, and valuing one another’s diverse perspectives, capacities, and knowledges, as we learn and build together. We create space for equitable and horizontal dialogue. We value mutually supportive learning. We honor each person’s lived experiences and include them as important parts of the generative process.
Liberation is a process of creating an open and expansive space that encourages folks to express themselves fully and authentically. Fostering a space of liberation requires challenging the status quo, breaking with harmful norms, rectifying epistemic erasures, and opening dialogues to address systems of oppression. We are not afraid to tell the difficult truths of colonialism in relation to ongoing systemic inequity.
We cultivate love, care, compassion, and respect for all lifeforms and beings. We strive to center the needs and expertise of those most oppressed and follow their lead. We embrace the uncertainty and ambiguity that are key to seeing beyond normative visions, enabling us to imagine and create “otherwise.”
Caro Novella Centellas, PhD
Sarah Rebolloso McCullough, PhD
Juan Carlos Sanchez