Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion DEI

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How to prevent and minimize DEI backfire

  • 1.  How to prevent and minimize DEI backfire

    Posted 11-05-2023 19:19

    Dear DEI Colleagues,

    I am super proud of my doctoral student and PhD Project member Lauryn Burnett, who is the lead author of a Business Horizons article titled "How to prevent and minimize DEI backfire." We argue that backfire occurs when well-intended initiatives result in unintended harmful outcomes (e.g., increased discrimination against and decreased performance of members of underrepresented groups). So, we provide five evidence-based recommendations to help organizations successfully implement DEI practices while preventing and minimizing backfire:

    (1) broaden engagement in targeted recruitment

    (2) adopt a context-conscious perspective on diversity training

    (3) create DEI accountability structures

    (4) align DEI with communication and culture

    (5) use a multi-level approach to monitor and evaluate DEI practices.

    If interested, you can download the article at https://doi.org/10.1016/j.bushor.2023.11.001  

    All the best,


    Herman Aguinis, Ph.D.
    Avram Tucker Distinguished Scholar & Professor of Management
    The George Washington University School of Business
    Washington, DC