Diversity and Inclusion Standards: A Laudable but Premature Goal

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Comments on an article by Rosemary Hays-Thomas & Marc Bendick Jr. (see record 2013-28530-002). Hays-Thomas and Bendick argue that if formal standards of practice for diversity and inclusion (D & I) were created, then major improvements would follow. That is, if the right people, processes, and relationships were built, and continuous improvement standards were implemented, then major benefits for D & I practice would ensue. Hays-Thomas and Bendick suggested a couple of mechanisms for breaking the "paralyzing cycle of skepticism." The solutions for militating against skepticism, however, may just perpetuate the cycle. For instance, distancing D & I from its historical roots would serve to deny the construct its essence or prototypical features that give it meaning. Currently, D & I research is both empirically and conceptually deficient and, therefore, does not provide an adequate foundation for standards. Once the field matures, and deficiencies become more tractable, then standards should be considered.

Original Citation

Olivares, O. J. (2013). Diversity and Inclusion Standards: A Laudable but Premature Goal. Industrial and Organizational Psychology: Perspectives on Science and Practice, 6(3), 209-212. https://doi.org/10.1111/iops.12035