Join authors Erica Gabrielle Foldy, associate professor of public and nonprofit management at NYU Wagner, and Tamara R. Buckley, associate professor of psychology at City University of New York, as they discuss their new book The Color Bind: Talking (And Not Talking) About Race at Work, on Wednesday, February 26 at 6 p.m. at the Wagner school’s home in the historic Puck Building, 295 Lafayette Street (at the corner of Houston St.), 2nd Floor, New York, N.Y.


The one-hour discussion, with a reception to follow, is free and open to the public. It will be moderated by Melody Barnes, vice provost for New York University and former director of President Obama's Domestic Policy Council. The event is presented by Wagner and its Research Center for Leadership in Action (RCLA).

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Public service organizations regularly face issues related to race and ethnicity but usually resist actually talking about them. The authors have identified this as “the color bind.” The book under discussion grew out of a study of child welfare workers. Foldy and Buckley observed teams over several years to see how their members talked about race and ethnicity in their work, and found that most teams barely broached the topic. In fact, only one team regularly brought race or ethnicity into their conversations. The authors dug into what made this team different and gleaned some important lessons for social service organizations, advocacy groups, public agencies, schools, health providers, and other social sector contexts.

The Color Bind shares in-depth case studies of this team and others, and outlines strategies – including modeling desired behavior and encouraging movement toward color cognizance – for organizations looking to transcend the color bind and engage race in ways that advance their goals and create trusting relationships.

David Elcott, the Henry and Marilyn Taub Professor of Practice in Public Service and Leadership, NYU Wagner, will provide opening and closing remarks at the discussion.


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Robert Polner
Robert Polner
(212) 998-2337