Creating Race Equity Intentionally at City, University of London and within Higher Education
Welcome to our growing hub of anti-racism resources and lived experience insights to help tackle racism, raise awareness and increase conversations around the experiences of racism in the UK and in UK Higher Education. Through this online hub, we hope to provide a growing library of online self-education learning resources that can be used by an individual learner no matter where they are on their inclusion and anti-racism learning journey. This hub provides self-education resources for those within City, University of London and across the UK Higher Education Sector. Write to us if you would like to add resources or suggest modifications and improvements.
In order for you to get the most out of this learning space, please be mindful of the following:
- Be anti-racist. Go beyond “i’m not a racist”
We recognise that real harm and hurt can be caused due to unintentional ignorance. Therefore, whether you are an educator, a student, leader or an individual working within the higher education sector or elsewhere – investing in your own self-education, learning how to converse and exchange thoughts on anti-racism, inclusion and equity is critical. Learning to put in the effort to intentionally learn about and consider the lived experiences of those who are different to you, is the first step towards avoiding unintentional harm and will help you on your anti-racism journey. Ibram X. Kendi’s work is a great starting point to learn more about anti-racism.
2. Educate yourself first
You can find a number of learning resources in our curated anti-racism resources hub and grow your knowledge on the reality of racism in higher education as well as learn about it’s detrimental impact.Find guidance on white allyship, understand privilege and fragility, consider an alternative perspective while learning how to be an inclusive leader.
3. Support yourself.
For Black, Asian and staff of colour in particular as well as those who work to create inclusion, we have collated resilience, support and empowerment resources to navigate higher education and workplaces generally.
4. This is a marathon not a sprint.
Learning and its application is a lifelong, continuous process and not an immediate quick win. This is particularly true if you are White and new in your own inclusion and anti-racism journey. You may feel a sense of urgency to apply what you have learnt, but be mindful and purposeful of how you employ your sense of urgency to avoid burnout.
5. If you are a White leader, be mindful that you act as an accomplice and proactive ally and translate your sense of urgency to your peer groups, other White allies, leaders you work with and support rather than adding to the pressures of your Black, Asian and staff of colour who are often tasked to fix systemic inequalities that are created for them and where they will often not be representative on leadership boards, panels and as leaders themselves.
6. If you are White and lead Diversity, Equity and Inclusion work, be mindful that just because you have only now woken up to the urgency of creating equity, that you do not burnout those under your care and executing this work – whether they are White, Black or people of colour.
You need to read, consider, acknowledge and understand this:
Black people in particular (and disproportionately), along with indigenous, biracial and people of colour – who are the global majority – have spent more than 400 years enduring the impacts of racism, inequity, being minoritised, being racialised and being excluded while having their cultures, efforts, knowledge, wealth, food and practices being appropriated and co-opted for the benefit of Whiteness and White society around the world.
Black, Biracial, Indigenous and people of colour have been aware of the urgency of action and creating equity and inclusion as well as giving diversity a voice for centuries and generations – not just since May 2020 with the death of George Floyd – which was not a moment in time but a critical tipping point in human consciousness. If you have started on your inclusion journey – this is great, but do not burnout others and do not burn yourself out.
Be purposeful and strategic and apply pressure to act where it is actually needed e.g. White Leaders, executives, White HR professionals and others in positions of power, influence and privilege who may be performative, indulging in anti-blackness/ stereotypes/ biases and paying lip service or be slow to act to be anti-racist and inclusive.
All lives cannot matter until Black Lives Matter because the world is not created equal and Black lives are still disproportionately and severely impacted among people of colour, globally but particularly in the UK, US and Europe within White dominant societies.
Educate yourself. Be intentional. Avoid causing harm and hurt unintentionally. You are responsible whether you intended it or not. Own your ignorance. Own your learning journey and do better to be anti-racist, inclusive and equitable – every.single.day.
Be someone. Do something.
More about this website and why it was created:
This website was developed and built with the intention to provide professionals within the higher education industry (and wider) with an online anti-racism and inclusive learning toolkit of guidance on race equity creation and considerations.
This website is one of the many deliverables developed as part of Advance HE’s Good Practice Grant awarded to Dr. Kavita Powley for her project titled:
Improving Inclusive Leadership through ExCo and BAME staff Reciprocal Mentoring: spotlight stories on the experiences of BAME mentors and White mentors.
Dr. Kavita Powley, at City, University of London, was awarded the grant to produce an innovative online toolkit of guidance and short films on ‘spotlight stories’ to showcase the experiences of Executive Team members and BAME staff who were part of the Reciprocal Mentoring Scheme. More on the project can be found here.