We Hear You. We See You. We Support You.

June 3, 2020

We at the Institute for Social Research recognize the weariness, the anxiety, the anger, and the betrayal expressed by so many as our nation grapples with continued examples of racial injustice.

Over the past few months, the COVID-19 pandemic has laid bare and exacerbated inequities for communities of color. The disproportionate suffering of Black Americans is well-documented, supported by decades of research. But if research alone could solve this problem, we’d have eradicated racism and racial injustice long ago.

During this time, the world has also learned the names of George Floyd, Ahmaud Arbery, and Breonna Taylor — the latest of many victims, not of any novel virus, but of the longstanding affliction of racial violence in this country.

title card We are reaching out today in solidarity, with colleagues across campus, to acknowledge the collective and individual wounds inflicted by injustice and oppression. In this moment, many of us find ourselves in isolation — trying to make sense of an unpredictable world — without access to the social structures and connections we have come to rely on for support. Please care for your friends and colleagues. Reach out to others to see how they are doing and for support that you need. Don’t hesitate to contact any of us directly to let us know what we can do to help.

Our Commitment to You

At ISR our efforts to conduct and promote social science research are founded on our desire to develop a more diverse, inclusive, and equitable world. We do that both through our study of broad and diverse communities and by building a diverse, inclusive, and equitable organization that is representative of those communities.

ISR affirms its Guiding Principles for Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion. We will uphold these principles by treating each other with respect and embracing different perspectives, backgrounds, cultures, view points, and ways of seeing the world. We will support these principles in all aspects of our work including recruiting, hiring, developing, and retaining employees. We will hold ourselves accountable, and ISR will provide the resources to promote success in achieving diversity, equity, and inclusion.

As the challenges continue, we believe that progress can be made in advancing racial and social justice. As social scientists, we have devoted our careers to studying trends in society and the economy. At this moment, we need to pause to hear the voices of our community. We will draw upon the talents and ideas of our entire ISR community. We ask that everyone at ISR join us on this difficult but necessary journey.

Stay safe. Be well.


David Lam, Director, Institute for Social Research (ISR)

Sheri Notaro, Director of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion, ISR

Richard Gonzalez, Director, Research Center for Group Dynamics

Ken Kollman, Director, Center for Political Studies

Margaret Levenstein, Director, ICPSR

Jeffrey Morenoff, Director, Population Studies Center

Matthew Shapiro, Director, Survey Research Center

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