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Affinity Groups

Affinity Groups provide mutual support and a sense of community to further the non-political, affinity-related interests of those engaged in human factors/ergonomics. These groups could be related to gender, ethnicity, national origin, veteran’s status, or other characteristics under the purview of the Diversity Committee. Their purpose is different from that of Technical Groups and Professional Groups.  Affinity Groups are an extension of HF/E Diversity and Inclusion efforts, focusing on both inclusivity within the profession and on advancing science that addresses longstanding societal problems. Affinity Groups differ from Technical Groups as they offer community, mentoring and support based on areas of collective identification.  Affinity Groups can concentrate on challenging our profession to address these dimensions of personal identification more thoughtfully.  We hope that these communities will play an integral role throughout the course of a member’s career. There is no cost to become a member of an HFES affinity group.

The following Affinity Groups are currently organized and any member may opt in to any of them by navigating to the applicable Community and clicking the “Join” button.  (Member login required.)

  • HFE WOMAN (Women’s Group) 
    • Dedicated to celebrating diversity within the society, specifically by creating an informal setting where issues related to women can be discussed. In doing this, we aim to facilitate networks where mentorship and networking with women of the society can occur so that future leaders receive the development they need.
  • LGBTQ+
    • The LGBTQ+ Affinity Group exists to better serve our members who identify as lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, gender non-conforming, and their allies and supporters. This HFES Affinity Group has three objectives: To promote diversity, inclusion, and equity for the queer community within the Society, to foster community between HFES members through welcoming events (at conferences and symposia), and to better our world through outreach activities with HFES’ partners and associated institutions.
  • Black, Indigenous, People of Color (BIPOC)
    • The Black, Indigenous, People of Color (BIPOC) Affinity Group is committed to creating a community within the Society to connect thought leaders, senior managers, mid-career / young professionals, and students that identify as BIPOC – including Black, Indigenous, Asian, Latinos and Hispanics across the globe – to enhance the recruitment, retention, and professional growth of BIPOC in the HF/E field. We welcome non-BIPOC committed to use their position to serve as advocates for improving diversity equity and inclusion for BIPOC. 
  • Disability/Chronic Illness (DCI)
    • The Disability / Chronic Illness Affinity Group is a space for networking, mentorship, and advocacy within HFES for people identifying as disabled or living with a chronic health condition.

Why Join an Affinity Group? Why Does it Matter? 

HFES supports and celebrates the diversity of the students, practitioners, educators, researchers, and others who engage in the profession of human factors/ergonomics and the stakeholders who benefit from their practice.  We are committed to diversity, equity and inclusion across the broad range of human characteristics.  HFES Affinity Groups can serve as a “safe space” for open discussion and idea sharing across and within groups that have been historically underrepresented 

All interested persons, regardless of Society membership level, may participate in any Affinity Group.  Members of the Society interested in forming a new Affinity Group may file a petition with the Council of Affinity Groups.  The HFES staff will be pleased to provide details concerning the process.