Our philosophy

The Bigley lab is one of inclusion and enthusiasm. Science is the exploration of the unknown, so we focus on creating an environment that promotes diversity of backgrounds, ideas, experiences, and life paths. We believe that diversity promotes creativity. We love what we are doing in the lab and work hard to support our lab members in order to maintain our enthusiasm for the work we do.

As such, there are some rules we follow in the Bigley lab:

  • The goal for every trainee should be to learn to how think about and approach a problem. Learning how to create a hypothesis, test it and critically analyze data can be applicable to whatever career goals trainees have.
  • Honesty and integrity are more important than getting the result you want. Trainees will learn ethics in science and undergo discussions as a group and one-on-one to ensure that experiments, analysis and dissemination of data are done ethically.
  • The rule of threes in science: on average things take about three times as long as you think and if you have three failures for each success you’re doing fine. As such, trainees are not expected to be perfect and won’t be rushed beyond their capabilities. Also, every hour reading is worth three hours working in the labs so reading and understanding the literature will be encouraged and fostered.
  • In science, success requires hard work and dedication, but does not have to be the only thing trainees are dedicated to. Being well rounded improves a trainee’s ability to approach different problems and avoid burnout.
  • Science should be a team sport. When someone in the lab is struggling, has a deadline, or has competition, the rest of the lab will help them move things forward. The Bigley lab is a collaborative environment in which we all give and receive by contributing to each other’s projects. Asking for help will be encouraged, not disparaged. This includes work and non-work related challenges.
  • We participate in science to learn how biology works and how we can help our fellow persons and the world. Therefore, although publication is an important end result, the main focus should be on the process of doing good, thorough, repeatable science.
  • Good communication in science is essential. It allows us to share our results, give and receive feedback, get help overcoming obstacles, and get others interested in what we do. Trainees will have weekly one-on-one and lab meeting, will participate in internal and external conferences, will be encouraged to collaborate, and will be given opportunities to write various grants and manuscripts.
  • Lab members will treat each other with the utmost respect. The Bigley lab is a casual environment, but racism, sexism, ageism and other disparaging behavior will not be tolerated. Members are encouraged and supported to raise any concerns so they can be addressed quickly in order to maintain an environment in which people feel safe and included.