From Ginny's Desk: Surfacing and Countering Implicit Bias
Monday, March 27, 2017 12:00 AM


Surfacing and Countering Unconscious Bias:

The First Steps Towards Diversity, Equity and Inclusion

Special Workshops on Thursday, April 13, 2017

3:00 – 5:00 PM - Group A

6:30 – 8:30 PM - Group B

Location to be announced

On Thursday, April 13th, A.R.T./New York is hosting two workshops on Implicit Bias. Alicin Williamson and Whitney Tome, Principal and Counsel with the Raben Group, a national public policy firm committed to opening the doors of power and influence for lasting inclusive change, will lead the workshop. With offices in Washington, DC and New York City, the Raben Group offers services in Strategic Communications; Government Relations; Diversity, Equity and Inclusion; and Strategic Planning.  We urge all members to come and to bring a board member as well!

What is Implicit Bias?

According to Emanuella Grinberg, CNN’s contributing writer on Race and Reality in America::

“Implicit bias refers to attitudes or stereotypes that affect our understanding, actions and decisions in an unconscious manner, according to the Kirwan Institute for the Study of Race and Ethnicity, which publishes an annual Implicit Bias Review. It's different from suppressed thoughts we might conceal to keep the peace; it's the opposite of explicit bias, which refers to attitudes or beliefs that we fully admit to.

Recent claims of overt and covert discrimination on college campuses and in policing raise the question: How does someone's unconscious reaction to people of a different race, religion or sexuality influence their judgment and behavior? When CNN asked psychologists and social scientists to explain how implicit bias manifests in everyday life, many were reluctant to commit to an answer, because it's hard to rule out alternative explanations.

In other words, it can happen, but it's hard to prove.”


According to Charles Gallagher, Chairman of the Department of Sociology and Criminal Justice at LaSalle University in Philadelphia, “When you think backwards, what you think is normal is really cultural pressure that pushes you into bias, implicit and conscious.”

In our workshop, we will explore how to recognize implicit bias in your lives.  Only through self-awareness can we begin to combat it.

For more information, you might wish to read these articles prior to the workshop:

  1. Juliet Bourke, Christie Smith, Heather Stockton, Nicky Wakefield, From diversity to inclusion: Move from compliance to diversity as a business strategy, (Deloitte University Press, 2014).  
  2. Sylvia Ann Hewlett, Maggie Jackson, Ellis Cose, and Courtney Emerson, Vaulting the Color Bar: How Sponsorship Levers Multicultural Professionals Into Leadership, (Center for Talent Innovation, 2012).
  3. Gardiner Morse, Designing a Bias-Free Organization, (Harvard Business Review, 2016).


And please, join us for the workshop on April 13

Register for Group A - 3-5pm »

Register for Group B - 6:30-8:30pm »