Thinking Strategically about System Change: Building Gender Equity in the Academy

Thursday 12:40 pm – 1:05 pm PT / 1:40 pm – 2:05 pm MT / 2:40 pm – 3:05 pm CT / 3:40 pm – 4:05 pm ET Online

Sandra Laursen, University of Colorado at Boulder
Ann Austin, Michigan State University

The poster will share strategies and lessons learned from research studying institutional change projects to enhance gender equity on STEM faculties. Our 2020 book, Building Gender Equity in the Academy: Institutional Strategies for Change, comes from over a decade of research studying the experiences of ADVANCE Institutional Transformation projects that take a systemic and institution-focused approach to the problem of gender inequity. We have distilled this research into a handbook and how-to guide for leaders in academic institutions—aimed at busy people who want to make evidence-based decisions on what they can do to increase gender equity, and at emerging leaders of all ages and stages who can nudge those in power and prepare to lead themselves someday.

The heart of the book is a collection of 12 research-based strategies, organized in four groups by what part of the gender equity problem they address. For each strategy, we offer a rationale for each strategy, a variety of models, and advice from experience and data about how an institution might choose, implement and evaluate them. The opening section offers a succinct literature review—what is the problem, how is it gendered and grounded in STEM—and describes our research. And the book closes with a synthesis about how the strategies are context-sensitive and how to analyze your own organizational context to make choices about which of the strategies best fit for your particular institution. While the ADVANCE projects we studied were focused on gender, many of the strategies also readily adapt to address other dimensions of equity, such as race, ethnicity, class, disability, Indigenous status, and country of origin, and to other domains of institutional change, including STEM instruction.

For more information about the book, visit

Presentation Media

Poster - bookPoster051821.pdf (Acrobat (PDF) 3.7MB Jun5 21)

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