1st Edition

Affirmative Action and Racial Equity Considering the Fisher Case to Forge the Path Ahead

By Uma M. Jayakumar, Liliana M. Garces Copyright 2015
    252 Pages 9 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    252 Pages 9 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

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    The highly anticipated U.S. Supreme Court decision in Fisher v. University of Texas placed a greater onus on higher education institutions to provide evidence supporting the need for affirmative action policies on their respective campuses. It is now more critical than ever that institutional leaders and scholars understand the evidence in support of race consideration in admissions as well as the challenges of the post-Fisher landscape.

    This important volume shares information documented for the Fisher case and provides empirical evidence to help inform scholarly conversation and institutions’ decisions regarding race-conscious practices in higher education. With contributions from scholars and experts involved in the Fisher case, this edited volume documents and shares lessons learned from the collaborative efforts of the social science, educational, and legal communities. Affirmative Action and Racial Equity is a critical resource for higher education scholars and administrators to understand the nuances of the affirmative action legal debate and to identify the challenges and potential strategies toward racial equity and inclusion moving forward.

    Foreword by Gary Orfield

    Part 1: Background and Evidence Submitted

    Chapter 1: The Legal Context and Social Science Evidence in Fisher v. University of Texas

    Liliana M. Garces

    Chapter 2: Leadership, Citizenship, and Civic Capacity: The Imperative of Racial Diversity for Realizing Higher Education’s Public Mission

    Susan Sturm and Olatunde C. A. Johnson

    Chapter 3: The Promise of Diversity in Remedying the Harms of Identity-Related Threats and Racial Isolation

    Allison S. Elgart, Victoria C. Plaut, Nicole Arlette Hirsch, and Eva Jefferson Paterson

    Chapter 4: Tejas Es Diferente: UT Austin’s Admissions Program in Light of Its Exclusionary History

    Tomiko Brown-Nagin, Lani Guinier, and Gerald Torres

    Chapter 5: Access and Diversity at the University of California in the Post-Affirmative Action Era

    Michal Kurlaender, Elizabeth Friedmann, and Tongshan Chang

    Part 2: Lessons and Strategies Moving Forward

    Chapter 6: The Mismatch Myth in U.S. Higher Education: A Synthesis of Empirical Evidence at the Law School and Undergraduate Levels

    William C. Kidder and Richard O. Lempert

    Chapter 7: Amplifying Asian American Presence: Contending with Dominant Racial Narratives in Fisher

    Mitchell James Chang

    Chapter 8: From Access to Outcomes: Considering the Texas Top Ten Percent Plan and Its Relationship to Student Persistence

    Catherine L. Horn and Stella M. Flores

    Chapter 9: Walking the Diversity Rationale Talk: A Call to Institutions

    María C. Ledesma

    Chapter 10: Reflections on the Diversity (Rationale) Literature: Examining the Potential and Need for Critical Diversity Research Praxis

    Uma M. Jayakumar and Annie S. Adamian, with Mitchell James Chang

    Afterword: Working Collectively Toward Racial Equity in Higher Education Policy

    Uma M. Jayakumar and Liliana M. Garces


    Uma M. Jayakumar is Associate Professor of Organization and Leadership at the University of San Francisco and Faculty Associate at the Institute for Social Research at the University of Michigan.

    Liliana M. Garces is Assistant Professor of Higher Education and Research Associate in the Center for the Study of Higher Education at the Pennsylvania State University.

    "Jayakumar and Garces bring together a breathtaking collection of essays that compellingly reveal not merely the educational, legal, and social contexts of the Fisher case, but also the contested and compromised work of strategizing responses that are both driven by larger visions of equity even while situated in ever-evolving contexts. Affirmative Action and Racial Equity is crucial for justice work, not only in higher education, but also in education more broadly."

    --Kevin Kumashiro, Dean of the School of Education, University of San Francisco

    "This important volume is not only about affirmative action; it is also about the future of higher education. The scholars in this book look at the continuing legal battle over affirmative action as policy and offer a perspective on diversity that imagines a promising path toward racial equity. A must-read for higher education scholars and leaders alike."

    --anthony lising antonio, Associate Professor of Education, Stanford University

    "Drawing from a wide range of empirical evidence providing testimony to the harms associated with racial isolation in fully achieving the educational benefits of diversity for all students, the essays highlight the broader societal mandate we face as we contemplate a world that is at risk of leaving too much talent behind by failing to educate those who can lead this diverse nation forward. A very well done and timely assessment of a pressing global mandate."

    --Nancy Cantor, Chancellor, Rutgers University-Newark