The Tufts Psychology Department’s Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion (EDI) Committee is charged with promoting our publicly stated departmental principles that we value mutual respect and equal opportunity and that the creation and maintenance of a diverse and inclusive environment is essential to rigorous thought, informed analysis, and scholarly excellence.
The EDI committee was established in June 2020 with a primary impetus being the acknowledgment that our department needs to be more explicit and proactive in our efforts to combat anti-Black racism.
The committee’s responsibilities include: asking questions and recommending potential answers regarding our department’s commitment to being a safe and supporting environment for all groups and individuals; the assessment and remediation of anti-Black racism and all forms of bias in our department; developing concrete steps to increase the representation in our department of underrepresented racial minorities and other marginalized groups; strategizing as to how our department can establish and perpetuate a commitment to anti-racism at the level of the university and general society.
Structure and Process
The committee is constituted of faculty, staff, graduate students, and undergraduate students, meeting twice per month during the academic year. We are currently organized into two task forces: Climate, Colloquium, Communication, and Curriculum (4C) and Recruitment, Training, and Mentoring (RTM). Each task force is charged with considering the following as it considers potential EDI initiatives:
- Data-Driven – audit/assessment will inform recommendations.
- Inclusion – audit/assessment/recommendation process includes non-committee member viewpoints (this might even include temporary ad-hoc membership).
- Documentation – document/resource collection for teaching/training purposes.
- Timing – short-/long-term goal setting and assessment for recommendations.
- Equity – equitable work distribution considering identity/department role. Each task force might be chaired/convened by a faculty member who would also be expected to take on more work/responsibility.
- Sustainability – identifying and working with existing groups (undergrad, department committees, other departments or groups) who might be partners and/or take over functions in the long term. Some are obvious, others are not.
To help us achieve these goals, individuals create, maintain, and share Project Checklist Documents that allow other committee members to track progress, as well as access resources or discussion related to their work. We also collect links to these overviews in a Project Activity Tracker that serves as a reference for our meetings and discussions.
Initiatives are first reviewed within each task force before presenting to the entire committee for review, comment, and voting. Once voted on by the committee, the initiative is escalated/distributed/implemented as appropriate.