C2ST Speakeasy: Mission to Mars--Team Composition
Galway Arms Irish Bar & Restaurant
2442 N. Clark St.
60614 Chicago , IL
United States
41° 55' 35.7744" N, 87° 38' 29.1984" W

C2ST Speakeasy: Mission to Mars--Team Composition

NASA and its international partners are planning to send humans to Mars in the 2030’s. Mission to Mars will challenge the frontiers of human collaboration as the crew lives and works in an extreme environment. The crew of 4 will be confined to a space the size of a small studio apartment for 2 ½ years. As the crew travels further into deep space, the extreme distance will result in significant communication delays with Earth. Complex feats such as space walks, landing, and launch from Mars will be executed by the small crew with unparalleled levels of autonomy from ground control. It’s estimated that once the crew reaches Mars, ground control will receive updates, errors, and information about emergencies with a 22-minute delay.

The small crew will need to work together as a team. They’ll need to rely on one another for social support, keep interpersonal conflicts manageable, coordinate seamlessly to execute complex tasks, and adapt to whatever comes their way.

How will NASA build a team that can excel in this extreme environment? Could you go on such a mission?

Dr. Bell and her colleagues are currently funded by NASA to research how combinations of team members interact and perform in an extreme environment similar to that expected of deep space exploration.  They collect data from teams living and working in a small habitat at Johnson Space Center and use computer simulation to model which combinations of team members are likely to excel on this extreme and incredible journey.  Join us as Dr. Bell describes her research creating a predictive model of team composition for Mission to Mars. Bring your questions about Mission to Mars and composing teams in space and beyond; Dr. Bell will leave plenty of time for Q&A.

Dr. Suzanne Bell is a tenured professor of industrial and organizational psychology in the College of Science and Health at DePaul University. Her research focuses on the strategic staffing of organizations, training and development, and team effectiveness. The U.S. Army and NASA have funded her research. In 2015, NASA awarded her and her collaborators a $1 million grant to create a predictive team composition model for long-distance space exploration (e.g., Mission to Mars). In 2016, NASA awarded the team, along with Russian collaborators, a second grant to cooperatively research the interpersonal compatibility of crews in prolonged isolation and confinement. Her research appears in top peer-reviewed journals such as American Psychologist, Journal of Management, Journal of Applied Psychology, and Organizational Research Methods. She has received a number of awards and recognitions for her research. Dr. Bell is a Fellow of the Society for Industrial and Organizational Psychology. In 2017, she was listed as one of the top 2% most cited authors in introductory industrial and organizational psychology textbooks. She was named one of 2016’s top Chicago Women in Science by Make it Better Magazine. He research and expertise has been covered in Harvard Business Review, Live Science, Scientific American, Discovery, and Smithsonian Magazine among others. 

DETAILS: C2ST is pleased to announce a new location for its Speakeasy series, Galway Arms Irish Bar & Restaurant in Lincoln Park. Tuesday, June 12, Galway Arms Irish Bar & Restaurant, 2442 N. Clark St., Chicago, IL, 60614. 7:00 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. This event will be held in the private room upstairs. Those under 21 are welcome to attend this program. Delicious food and drink available for purchase, you can view Galway Arms' menu here.  Advanced registration requested, but we ask that you arrive early to ensure seating, as we cannot reserve seats in this location.

Cover image of Mars surface courtesy of PopSci