Equity as a Core Value

We’ve just completed Day 2 at #TriangleSCI, and more hard (but good) work is now behind the #HuMetrics team. Today we took our huge brainstorming list from yesterday and distilled the values we believe should underpin the development of “humane metrics.” We came up with five such values: Equity, Openness, Collegiality, Quality, and Community. I am looking here at equity. My fellow teammates Simone Sacchi, Chris Long, Jason Rhody, and Nicky Agate are tackling each of the others, and Stacy Konkiel is writing on the overarching question we looked to tackle: influence vs. impact.


What do we mean by “equity”? For us, equity is very much the concept described by Falk et al. (1993:2):

Equity derives from a concept of social justice. It represents a belief that there are some things which people should have, that there are basic needs that should be fulfilled, that burdens and rewards should not be spread too divergently across the community, and that policy should be directed with impartiality, fairness and justice towards these ends.

In this classic image, equality is shown on the left; equity, on the right. (Credit: The Second Line Education Blog.)

In the academy, valuing the principle of equity can (and we would argue should) inflect a number of everyday activities: creating courses, advising and mentoring students (and colleagues), organizing conferences, facilitating workshops, appointing or serving on search committees and editorial boards  —  and so much more. The results of embracing work done in the spirit of achieving an equitable academy? We want to imagine a world in which all who partake in teaching, learning, reading, researching, and writing  —  in short, all of us engaged in the scholarly enterprise  —  commit to actively listen to others and to openly question our own assumptions, to share, to amplify, and ultimately to empower.

Follow team #HuMetrics as we wrestle with humanities metrics. We are Christopher Long, Rebecca Kennison, Stacy Konkiel, Simone Sacchi, Jason Rhody, and Nicky Agate, and we’ll be writing here all week.

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