Dear Members of the Brown Community,
Brown is an academic community that prizes individuality and intellectual independence, but also recognizes that successful learning communities must be grounded in an ethos of mutual respect. Yet Brown has been challenged to confront issues of racism, discrimination and inequity that prevent us from being the truly unified community that we aspire to be.
I’m writing to share the final Pathways to Diversity and Inclusion: An Action Plan for Brown University, available here, which outlines a set of concrete, achievable actions to make Brown a more fully diverse and inclusive community.
The strength of this plan is that it is the product of an entire community, past and present, committed to making Brown better. Over the course of more than a year, students, faculty, staff, alumni and community members reflected, commented and provided insightful input to make this the Brown community’s action plan. Its final development was significantly shaped by the campus activism of the fall and the extensive input we received on the draft we shared as a working document with the campus in November.
The plan acknowledges that institutions of higher education, including Brown, have traditionally failed to include fully people of all races, ethnicities, creeds, socioeconomic classes, gender identities, sexual orientations, and disability statuses. To confront this reality and its enduring legacies, the University is committing to transform the policies, structures, and practices that have led to the exclusion—rather than the meaningful inclusion—of members of our community.
I want to thank Provost Richard Locke for the work of his office to shepherd the essential process of involving our entire community in the final development of the plan, as well as the many administrators, faculty, students, staff, alumni and community members who contributed their time, ideas and experiences to this important effort.
But the work of our community continues. The new Implementation section of the Pathways to Diversity and Inclusion website will foster transparency and track our progress on these actions, even as the plan is implemented and evolves to address emerging circumstances or needs.
I am excited about this plan and the work we will do together to build a stronger and more inclusive Brown community.
Professor of Economics and Public Policy