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Beyond Diversity and Inclusion: Challenging Structural Racism and Systemic Biases in Academic Knowledge Production

Chan, Leslie

Opening Keynote for FORCE2021 - Joining Forces to Advance the Future of Research Communications

While calls for equality, diversity, and inclusion (EDI) in academia have been ongoing for decades, the reckoning of the need to address EDI within scholarly publishing has been relatively recent. This is surprising given that publishing is central to the production and reproduction of the institutional culture of the academy, which has historically privileged Whiteness and Anglo-Eurocentric ways of knowing. In this talk, I posit that the various forms of structural racism persist in the academy because they are buttressed by the norms and standards of publishing encoded in Whiteness that remain largely invisible. Informed by critical theory, personal experience, and existing research, this talk makes visible the historical and contemporary manifestations of racism and systemic biases in publishing and calls for a new design of the knowledge production systems that center people, places, diverse ways of knowing and knowledge equity at the core.

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