Leading a Diversity Culture Shift in Higher Education : Comprehensive Organizational Learning Strategies book cover
1st Edition

Leading a Diversity Culture Shift in Higher Education
Comprehensive Organizational Learning Strategies

ISBN 9781138280717
Published January 25, 2018 by Routledge
250 Pages

USD $44.95

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Book Description

Leading a Diversity Culture Shift in Higher Education offers a practical and timely guide for launching, implementing, and institutionalizing diversity organizational learning. The authors draw from extensive interviews with chief diversity officers and college and university leaders to reveal the prevailing models and best practices for strengthening diversity practices within the higher education community today. They complement this original research with an analysis of key contextual factors that shape the organizational learning process including administrative leadership, institutional mission and goals, historical legacy, geographic location, and campus structures and politics.

Given the substantive challenge of engendering a cultural shift for diversity in a university setting, this book will serve as a concrete primer for institutions seeking to develop a systematic and progressive approach to diversity organizational learning. Readers will be able to engage with provocative case studies that grapple with the current pressures emanating from diversity training and learn effective strategies for creating more inclusive environments.

This book is a perfect resource for institutional leaders, administrators, faculty members, and key campus constituencies who are seeking transformational change, institutional success, and stability in a rapidly diversifying national and global environment.

Table of Contents


Foreword by Joe R. Feagin

Chapter I. An Improbable Landscape for Diversity Cultural Change

The Tumultuous Political Stage for Diversity

Jim Crow Revisited

The New Demographics: A Litmus Test for Change

Promising Leadership Practices in Activating Diversity Learning

Research Focus of the Study

Organization of the Book

Survey and Interview Process

Case Study I The Roller Coaster of Change at the University of Missouri at Columbia ("Mizzou")

Chapter II. Laying the Groundwork for a Diversity Cultural Shift

The Ongoing Counterpoint between Diversity and Inclusion

The Dangers of Neutralizing Diversity

Surveying the Campus Landscape for Diversity

Recasting Twenty-first Century Diversity Leadership

The Evolution of the Chief Diversity Officer Role

Faculty Governance and Diversity Change

Organizational Learning as a Catalyst for Diversity Transformation

Case Study II Crossing the Line: Legislative Threats to Diversity Programs at the University of Tennessee at Knoxville (UTK)

Chapter III. A Framework for Systematic Diversity Organizational Learning

The Inclusive Excellence Change Model

Prominent Theories of Cultural Change

Hidden Forces of Cultural Resistance

Phases of a Diversity Cultural Shift

Forward-looking Inclusive Excellence Change Strategies

Case Study III The Progressive Course of Diversity Organizational Learning at Princeton University

Chapter IV. Representative Approaches to Diversity Organizational Learning

Diversity Training versus Diversity Education

Transformative Learning for Diversity

Common Barriers to Diversity Organizational Learning

Strategic Diversity Learning Approaches

Cabinet-level Interactions

Faculty Development for Diversity

Administrator and Staff Professional Development

Student-focused Diversity Programs

Developing a Taxonomy for Diversity Organizational Learning

Key Questions in Evaluating Diversity Education Programs

Case Study IV Academic Prominence and Diversity Cultural Change at Lehigh University

Case Study V Moving from Compositional Diversity to Inclusive Learning Practices: The University of Maryland at College Park

Chapter V. Future Aspirations and Expectations

Appendix A Diversity Officer Sample

Appendix B Diversity Organizational Learning Matrix



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Edna Chun and Alvin Evans are award-winning authors and human resource diversity leaders with extensive experience in complex, multi-campus systems of higher-education. Two of their books, Are the Walls Really Down? Behavioral and Organizational Barriers to Faculty and Staff Diversity (2007) and Bridging the Diversity Divide: Globalization and Reciprocal Empowerment in Higher Education (2009) were the recipients of the prestigious Kathryn G. Hanson Publication Award by the national College and University Professional Association for Human Resources. They are also the authors of the first book appearing in Routledge’s Critical Viewpoints book series, Diverse Administrators in Peril (2012). Their co-authored book, The New Talent Acquisition Frontier: Integrating HR and Diversity Strategy in the Private and Public Sectors and Higher Education (Stylus, 2014), received a silver medal in the 2014 Axiom Business Book Awards and is the first book to provide a concrete road map to the integration of HR and diversity strategy.

Chun and Evans are also regular contributors to a number of leading journals on talent management, HR, and diversity strategies. The co-authors are frequent presenters at national conferences and symposia including the College and University Professional Association for Human Resources, the Academic Chairpersons Conference, the Society for Human Resource Management, and the National Conference on Race and Ethnicity. Edna Chun is Chief Leading Officer and Alvin Evans serves as Higher Education Practice Leader for HigherEd Talent, a national human resources and diversity consulting firm.



Leading a Diversity Culture Shift in Higher Education is a must-read for any higher education administration practitioner or scholar. The book masterfully weaves illuminating anecdotes with the latest state of the art scholarship to provide a primer on the major diversity-related issues facing higher education leadership today. It provides a blueprint for thinking about positive institutional change.
Robert M. Sellers, Ph.D., Vice Provost for Equity and Inclusion & Chief Diversity Officer, University of Michigan

Change, especially, cultural change is slow and hard in academia, but change we must. And in changing, we must embrace the demographic changes that are happening in our world and on our campuses. Leading a Diversity Cultural Shift in Higher Education with its rich case studies and analyses provides a roadmap for building a campus where everyone belongs.
Robert S. Nelsen, President, California State University, Sacramento

It was a pleasure to have the opportunity to read Leading a Diversity Cultural Shift in Higher Education, by authors Edna Chun and Alvin Evans. Chun and Evans have provided a roadmap for institutions of higher education to transform the mindset of the academy to become more inclusive by inextricably linking the transgressions of our historical founding to the persistent challenges to achieving racial diversity and inclusion in modern day higher education. Let the robust dialogue now begin with a historical context in place!
Dennis A. Mitchell, DDS, MPH, Vice Provost for Faculty Diversity and Inclusion, Columbia University

This research-based book by leading educators Edna Chun and Alvin Evans, arrived at a critical moment in history, both domestic and international. A moment when we are experiencing a diversity cultural shift in higher education around the globe. Given my years of experience in the field of higher education and collaborative work with industry and healthcare organizations, this book is a must-read for practitioners, senior university administrators and industry executives.
Dr. Henry Odi, Deputy Vice President for Equity and Community and Associate Provost for Academic Diversity, Lehigh University.