In IAS, we see diversity work as both individual and institutional actions taken to counteract relations of power and difference, relations historically characterized by the social exclusion, marginalization, and oppression of one group and the unearned privilege and overvaluation of another.
We see diversity as fluid in that the status and representation of groups shifts over time and context. In our current moment, this includes, but is not limited to, race, sex, gender identity, socioeconomic status, ethnicity, sexual orientation, age, disability, nationality, visa/documentation status, religion, and military status.
Our definition extends anti-bias frameworks and recognizes that identities are intersectional, complex, and multiply determined. We seek to redistribute opportunities and resources to foster equity and social justice.
As we operationalize, enact, and assess this plan, we are guided by the following critical questions: Who does diversity exclude? Does our diversity work foster a shared sense of responsibility in our commitment to advancing social justice? Do we promote inclusive, diverse participation in knowledge production both in and out of the classroom? And does our diversity work contribute to a community engaged university?
To enact these beliefs and commitments, IAS faculty approved a school-wide Diversity Plan (IASDP) in 2015 which focuses on the areas of Curriculum, Recruitment, Retention, Climate, and Community Engagement. While some of this plan needs re-assessment, especially given shifting roles on campus, it continues to guide the work that we do.