Global Inclusion and Diversity
NYU’s commitment to building and strengthening a university-wide culture of diversity, inclusion, and equity led to the creation of the Office of Global Inclusion, Diversity, and Strategic Innovation. As part of the Office of the President, the Office of Global Inclusion provides expert consultation, resources, and innovative strategies to help guide the University—and its uniquely global and diverse student, faculty, staff, administration, and alumni communities—toward a more inclusive future.
Read more about who we are.
Addressing Surges in Anti-Asian Racism - a message from OGI
Dear NYU Community,
Given recent occurrences and instances of ongoing xenophobia and racism directed toward members of Asian & Pacific Islander (API) communities, we are writing to ensure you and members of your NYU communities are aware of some upcoming programming, resources, and updates, as well as some recent legislation.
Before sharing more, in case you are not aware, February 12, 2021, was the beginning of the Lunar New Year - the Year of the Ox; we hope everyone continues to take good care as this new cycle begins. Please take a moment to review this celebration that took place at NYU Shanghai to celebrate the Lunar New Year, along with this video message from NYU-Shanghai.
Read the full statement on "Addressing Surges in Anti-Asian Racism - a message from OGI"
As Dr. Coleman wrote in April 2020, we in OGI continue to stand in solidarity with our Asian/ Pacific Islander/ American community members, and firmly repudiate anti-Asian actions and racist statements that have harmed members of these communities. We encourage you to visit the OGI website to review the full statement issued by Dr. Coleman in April 2020 and to utilize some of the resources listed, including the panel discussion Coping with and Contextualizing Anti-Asian Racism and Pandemics. We also hope you get involved with upcoming opportunities and resources such as:
Mending in Ongoing Crisis: Native Hawaiian & Pacific Islander Voices and COVID-19 on February 22, 6:00 pm -7:00 pm EST. (Presented by NYU’s Asian/Pacific/American Institute. For a complete listing of programs, you can visit A/P/A Institute’s website events page website.)
Transnational Feminisms and Reimagining in (Post) COVID World Conference on February 26, 10:00 am-4:40 pm EST. (Sponsored by NYU Womxn100; NYU OGI; NYU CSGS; NYU’s A/P/A Institute; SouthAsia | NYU; and the New York Center for Global Asia.)
NYU’s New York Center for Global Asia hosts a variety of programs such as the upcoming program in April (Dates TBA) called Show Me a Mountain: The Jamaican Chinese Community.
OGI Anti-Racism Resources [webpage] (that continues to be updated periodically), Toolkit for Navigating Difficult Conversations Related to Diversity, Equity, Inclusion, and Anti-Racism [PDF], and OGI Resources for Addressing Anti-Asian Racism [webpage].
For additional programs from NYU Shanghai, please visit the NYU Shanghai Events Calendar.
In addition, the Biden administration issued the Memorandum Condemning and Combating Racism, Xenophobia, and Intolerance Against Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders in the United States on January 26, 2021. This memorandum was issued to specifically address the unfortunate and ongoing xenophobia, violence, and racism directed toward members of the API communities; please share with members of your local communities, units, departments, and schools.
Finally, we would like to thank our partners in Shanghai, the Center for Global Asia, the NYU A/P/A Institute, and others in the NYU community for their leadership, and want to highlight again messages of support and resources that are circulating to counter the misinformation that has been mobilized to create environments of bias, hostility, and antagonism. We continue to work in collaboration with internal and external stakeholders to address intersectional issues of racism, sexism, xenophobia, homophobia, ableism, antisemitism, islamophobia, ageism, classism, between and amongst communities, and also to highlight opportunities to be accountable to one another as we build community together. We hope that you will join us in supporting members of our API communities, and we hope to connect with you at upcoming events and programs.
Wishing everyone the continued best,
The Office of Global Inclusion Team
Reflections on NYU MLK Week and the Start of Black History Month from Dr. Lisa Coleman (02/01/2021)
Dear Members of the NYU Community,
I am wishing you a successful start to the Spring 2021 Semester, and as always, I hope that you and your loved ones continue to take care as we navigate today, and what lies ahead. February 1st, 2021 is the start of NYU’s 16th Annual MLK Week commemoration during which we hope you will join us for some unique events and collective learning opportunities. It is also the beginning of what has been designated as Black History Month. As I prepared for this week and month, I have been reflecting deeply on the legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., this year’s MLK Week theme, “Chaos or Community?,” and all that we have and continue to confront across the globe. As we enter into these commemorations, I wanted to take some time to share thoughts about the chaos we have experienced, but also about community and our future together.
Read the full statement on "Reflections on NYU MLK Week and the Start of Black History Month from Dr. Lisa Coleman"
I will not be so bold as to say that I know what MLK, Jr. might do or say today; I, like others, can try to interpret his legacy through his teachings. Some of my takeaways are that we must continue to boldly call out and address ongoing injustices and travesties, including the relentless assaults on the civil rights of some and the obvious disparities that we have all witnessed over these last months (in some ways crystallized by the January 6th insurrection). As we highlight Black history, some of my lingering questions are: in all that we continue to witness, why does it take the death of BIPOC persons, and brutality and violence depicted in the most gruesome ways, for there to be the acknowledgment of and action against racism (even when the documentation, research, and evidence for decades are clear)? Why does it take the horrific and over-the-top spectacle of and visual images of Black death to get any reaction from general society? Why is there very little recognition of the enduring trauma and fear that Black communities experience as a result of ongoing assaults?
Before, during, and since the time of MLK, Jr., we have witnessed systematic killing and oppression of historically marginalized racial and ethnic communities, recharged xenophobia, the rise of terror, redlining, racism and its intersections embedded in the fabric of our institutional contexts, and on, and on. We have witnessed that, even when discussing the ways in which some lives matter and others do not, the disparate impact on indigenous communities, women, LGBTQ+ persons, some religious groups, and people with disabilities is often treated as taboo, divisive, too bold, or too radical to mention; and, far too often specific voices are continually silenced. Today, despite the many people who are focused on COVID-19 with great dedication, we (members of historically marginalized and disenfranchised communities) have and continue to experience willful negligence in addressing a pandemic that has exacerbated inequities and ravaged historically marginalized communities through the compounding disparities that continue to impact particular populations.
However, amid all of the aforementioned, I am reminded that we have also witnessed joy, excellence, brilliance, scholarship, advocacy, courage, innovation, and radical accountability. No matter how small at times, there continues to be a light —a collective of community action— emerging through the chaos. It is this burst of collaborative engagement that inspires me to do more, to work, and to recommit myself to the possibilities and processes of global higher education—to learning and the dissemination of research, to working with new generations as we build on the work of those who came before us, to creating new leadership pathways, to taking action that transforms “what was” into “what can be." It is possible to move out of chaos. We can collectively move toward a community that acknowledges our differences rather than obliterating them or one another. We can continue to educate about our histories and take action. We can develop concrete strategies to innovate and re-imagine a world where we focus on ensuring everyone can thrive, and not just survive.
To close this reflection, I have been thinking about how many have referred to our current reality as a “new normal.” I think we might have the opportunity to reconsider our histories of so-called normal and make change. Perhaps we need a “new different”—new possibilities, new opportunities, new ways of recognizing disparity and terror, new ways of “doing” based in research and action. For me, leadership is about transformation (taken from the South African notion of transformation in the post-apartheid period), moving from chaos to community— not a space of false optics, but rather a nuanced and generative space for the proliferation of community with varying ideas that are contested, and sometimes debated, not to annihilate but instead to create new, different ways of being and doing.
Perhaps then, in this “new different,” members of historically marginalized communities will be recognized for their gifts, and ongoing benevolence—understood to be solutions rather than problems to be fixed or patronized; allowed to partake in the immense civil and human rights afforded to others in the fullest extent; and, celebrated for the tremendous contributions to society they have made and continue to make in the face of adversities. So, again, while I don’t know what Martin Luther King, Jr. would do or say, his work demonstrates that we must take action, we must work together, and we must love one another with a radical love that ignites equity and engages radical accountability.
“ ...it must frankly be said… (they) are not putting in a similar mass effort to reeducate themselves out of their racial ignorance.”
–Martin Luther King, Jr.
“The world is before you and you need not take it or leave it as it was when you came in.”
I hope that you will join us in taking action to engage the complexity of community and the non-sanitized legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., as we move out of chaos toward communal change and our collective “new different.”
Lisa Coleman, PhD
Events & Engagement
Get Involved with OGI
Are you interested in getting involved with the Office of Global Inclusion programming and events? OGI is always looking for innovative individuals with a passion for strengthening inclusivity and diversity within our NYU community and beyond!
Read NYU's full Diversity Statement
NYU is committed to building a culture that respects and embraces diversity, inclusion, and equity, believing that these values – in all their facets – are, as President Andrew Hamilton said, “…not only important to cherish for their own sake, but because they are also vital for advancing knowledge, sparking innovation, and creating sustainable communities. They should be indispensable elements of an NYU education on all of our campuses. A diverse population encounters and appreciates all perspectives of an issue with a wealth of different approaches to confront it. The result is a higher quality of debate, and a more excellent and advanced academic enterprise.”
NYU’s past is not without blemish when it comes to its commitment to diversity and inclusion; in spite of some strides since NYU’s founding, we have fallen short. Awareness of this history makes us more committed to taking concrete steps to build an institution that truly recognizes the contributions of all its members.
As NYU’s Provost, Katherine Fleming, said in a September 2016 equity, diversity, and inclusion event, “NYU Together”:
“Cosmopolitanism at NYU doesn’t simply mean that we should have as diverse a student body, a faculty, and a staff as possible – obviously, we should have all those things. But once such a diverse group comes together and forms a community, it is not sufficient for everyone here to feel as though they contributed as part of ‘this category’ or ‘that category.’ Instead, we ought to work hard to make this a community where everyone has a truly cosmopolitan mindset – as part of the broadest possible understanding that we can have about what humankind is. And to really make diversity, equity, and inclusion come about, we have an obligation to make all people feel comfortable in that space, because we have defined our community in the broadest possible way.”
NYU faculty, students, administrators, and staff should be fully committed to a vision of equity, diversity, and inclusion at NYU that encompasses that idea, and that by being in some of the world’s greatest and most diverse urban centers, NYU has an opportunity to lead. Such a commitment in word and in deed would be in line with NYU’s mission, history, understanding of excellence in the 21st century, and our aspirations to produce leaders in all fields.
In New York and on its campuses and locations throughout the world, NYU is committed to:
- fostering intellectual inquiry, research, and artistic practices that respectfully and rigorously take account of a wide range of opinions, perspectives, and experiences.
- promoting an inclusive community in which diversity is valued and every member feels they have a rightful place, is welcome and respected, and is supported in their endeavors.
- developing and supporting programs and policies that measurably improve NYU's record of attracting and retaining students, as well as hiring and promoting faculty, administrators, and staff from historically underrepresented communities.
- building structures that promote inclusiveness and equity for all members of the NYU community, especially our colleagues from marginalized groups.