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Beyond Implicit Bias Training: 10 Ways to Support BIPOC Scholars in Response to #BLM

Updated: Jun 13, 2020

Published on June 7, 2020

(This blog post is a collective response by BIPOC scholars to my Facebook post this morning; in particular, I would like to thank Dr. Deepa Kumar, Dr. Reshmi Dutta-Ballerstadt, and Dr. Neha Vora for inputs and contributions to items #1, #2, #5, and #10).

BIPOC (Black, Indigenous, People of Color) scholars are asking for long-term structural changes in academia.

We do NOT want more:

  1. empty gestures and statements from University Presidents; please actively hire, support, and retain BIPOC scholars

  2. implicit bias training; please also discuss accountability and institutional change

  3. year-long taskforces to generate reports on racism; please act right now

  4. token special issues on BLM; please also recognize and dismantle the whiteness of mainstream academic publishing

  5. BIPOC scholars being overtly or covertly penalized, framed as "difficult and unreasonable," and gaslighted for sharing their experiences about racism; please actively listen to them and validate their experiences

  6. white scholars to be applauded simply for sharing anti-racism resources; please recognize the labor of BIPOC scholars who created and curated them.

  7. white scholars reading up on anti-racism this week to become the leading authorities on this topic by next year -- as keynote speakers, grant recipients, and paid consultants; please materially support the BIPOC scholars doing this work for decades.

  8. white scholars swooping in, co-opting, and taking credit for spaces that BIPOC scholars have painstakingly created (and are creating right now) in their respective disciplines; please tread these spaces with humility and respect

  9. white scholars erasing the labor of BIPOC scholars --- by taking their syllabi, reading lists, anti-racism google docs, and other materials they are sharing generously right now --- adding one or two things to it and then repackaging it as their own work; please credit BIPOC as innovators and producers of knowledge

  10. investment in existing structures of whiteness in academe; let's re-allocate more resources (such as time, money, energy, and space) towards supporting BIPOC scholarship, innovations, leadership, and excellence in academia

[To cite this piece: Ramasubramanian, Srividya (June 7, 2020). Beyond implicit bias training: 10 ways to support BIPOC scholars in response to #BLM. Dr. Srivi Blog.]


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