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Organizational Rhetoric or Reality? The Disparities Between Avowed Commitment to Diversity and Formal Programs and Initiatives in Higher Education Institutions.

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Presentation on theme: "Organizational Rhetoric or Reality? The Disparities Between Avowed Commitment to Diversity and Formal Programs and Initiatives in Higher Education Institutions."— Presentation transcript:

1 Organizational Rhetoric or Reality? The Disparities Between Avowed Commitment to Diversity and Formal Programs and Initiatives in Higher Education Institutions Larry L. Rowley, Sylvia Hurtado, Luis Ponjuan and Zachary Anderson University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, MI

2 Research Goals  To examine selective aspects of the approaches that colleges and universities utilize to emphasize or achieve diversity  To identify organizational characteristics that predict diversity initiatives and outcomes in colleges and universities  To contribute to discussions of how closely institutional diversity at colleges and universities mirrors the institutional mission statements, administrative rhetoric, and formal policies

3 Theoretical Framework  Diversity as an Organizational Concept  Diversity is a multi-level organizational concept that is impacted by various institutional contexts (e.g., historical, structural, psychological) (Hurtado, Milem, Clayton-Pederson, & Allen, 1999)  Diversity has an impact or implications within and across various organizational dimensions (Cox, 1993; Smith, 1995)  Institutionalism in Organizational Analysis  Prevailing institutionalized concepts can impact organizational forms and behaviors (DiMaggio & Powell, 1991)  Formal structures constructed within organizations can function as “myth and ceremony” (Meyer & Rowan, 1991)  Institutionalized concepts are manifested in organizations partially based upon social actions and interactions (Jepperson, 1991)

4 Methods  Sample  1440 Four year Institutions surveyed  55% return rate (744 institutions)  Analyses  Factor Analysis  Bivariate Analysis  Multiple Regression

5 2000 Carnegie Classifications

6 Percentage of Institutions with Mission Statements that Address Diversity

7 Percentage of Minority Faculty (Presence)

8 Percentage of Tenured Minority Faculty (Commitment)

9 Dependent Variables  Evaluation and Rewards for Diversity  Peer Comparisons to Create a Diverse Environment  Percentage of Minority Students Enrolled  Percentage of Tenured and Tenure Track Minority Faculty  Percentage of Tenured Minority faculty

10 Independent Variables  Institutional Background Characteristics  Student Enrollment figures represent the demographics of the local area  Institution’s admission selectivity  Association Affiliations (e.g. ACE, AACU, AAHE)  Institutional Categorization Variables  Carnegie Classification (Doctoral, Masters, Bachelors)  Institutional Control (e.g. Private or Public)  Institutional Rhetoric Variables  Core Leadership supports diversity  Institutional Priority on Diversity  Institutional Priority on Prestige  Does your Institution’s mission statement address: Diversity

11 Regression Results Predictors of Evaluation and Rewards for Diversity Doctoral Institution ** Private *** Core Leadership Support for Diversity *** Institutional Priority for Diversity *** Predictors of Progress Relative to Peers: Creating a Diverse Environment Core Leadership Support for Diversity *** Institutional Priority on Prestige (-)* Institutional Priority on Diversity *** Predictors of Institution’s Percentage of Minority Students Institution’s admission selectivity (-)*** Public Institution *** *p <.05, **p <.01, ***p <.001

12 Regression Results Predictors of Institution’s Percentage of Minority Faculty (Presence) Mission statement addresses diversity * Institutional Priority on Prestige ** Percentage of Minority Students *** Predictors of Percentage of Tenured Minority Faculty (Commitment) Student enrollment reflect demographics of local area * Institutional Priority on Prestige * Percentage of Minority Students ** *p <.05, **p <.01, ***p <.001

13 Discussion and Conclusion  There are indeed some disparities between avowed institutional commitment to diversity activity and diversity outcomes  Institutional characteristics and rhetoric were strong predictors of self- reported outcome measures. (Institutions “walk the walk” and “talk the talk”)  Institutional characteristics and rhetoric were weak predictors of more objective outcome measures (Institutions “talk the talk” but don’t “walk the walk”)  To maximize diversity outcomes (tenured minority faculty) there must be an “interlocking” set of commitments including both structural and behavioral factors  There is a need to move beyond mission rhetoric to articulation of priorities, evaluation and rewards for diversity progress, and core leadership support, and development of a diverse student body

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