IDS publishes anti-racism statement

Published on 2 July 2020

Following consultation with our equality, diversity and inclusion working group, the Institute of Development Studies is publishing its Anti-racism statement.  The statement builds on commitments made in its equality, diversity and inclusion policy and sets out concrete actions for how these commitments will be made real.

Director Professor Melissa Leach said:

“The deep-seated injustices and inequalities that black people and other people of colour face on a daily basis are entrenched within our institutions and societies.

“We can and must do more to tackle these injustices and inequalities and IDS is responding to the current moment with renewed action and clear plans for long-term, sustained endeavour.”

Anti-racism statement

The Institute of Development Studies believes in justice and equality for all.  We stand in solidarity with those around the world challenging racial injustices and are committed to being part of the urgent collective endeavour required to end racism. We also recognise that race and ethnicity intersect with other forms of exclusion and discrimination and that these intersections require specific attention.

We will act to make these commitments real by:

  • Interrogating our own institutional practices and culture to identify how they create or sustain patterns of injustices and inequalities and how that can be addressed, including through:
    • Recruitment practices that promote diverse, equal and inclusive workforce, leadership (including our board of Trustees), student body and partnerships and which seek to reflect the profile of those we work with.
    • Improved transparency on how we report on diversity within the Institute.
    • An institutional culture that is continuously seeking to identify, challenge and end racism, and intersecting discrimination and prejudice.
    • Intensifying our contribution to and engagement with the ongoing debate about what decolonising means in development and through our strategic aims to understand and challenge power dynamics, inequity and inequality, and to tackle injustices.
  • Working equitably with partners globally to continue to focus our research, learning and teaching on understanding and countering the drivers of extreme inequity, marginalisation and exclusion.
  • Ensuring that we work through equitable and sustainable partnerships which promote diverse knowledge, mutual learning and expertise and seek to overcome structural biases in academia and global policy discourse.
  • Ensuring equity in our teaching and learning programmes through:
    • A curriculum that reflects diverse knowledge and expertise and recognises and promotes understanding of the power imbalances that slow or limit progressive change for everyone, everywhere.
    • Increased levels of scholarship funding to enable greater access to students from all backgrounds to study at the Institute.
    • Avoiding complacency, supporting ongoing dialogue, learning and committing to actions.

If you are interested in finding out more about what the Institute is doing to tackle racism and other forms of discrimination, please contact  our equality, diversity and inclusion working group at [email protected]


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