Reflections on “How Political Science Can Be More Diverse”

Virtual Issue: Diversity, Inclusiveness, and Inequality

The APSA Presidential Task Force Report ‘Political Science in the 21st Century report’, now just over five years old, offered a number of recommendations to the discipline including several related to political science research on diversity and racial, ethnic, and gendered marginalization. After reading APSA journals articles published in the years prior to and following the taskforce report, Dianne Pinderhughes and Maryann Kwakwa, both of the University of Notre Dame, argue that, while there have been important steps toward increasing multicultural diversity in political science research and teaching, the barriers that contributed to its marginalization in the past continue to exist. The following article is included in the virtual review issue.

Reflections on “How Political Science Can Be More Diverse”

by Rodney HeroUniversity of California, Berkeley

The articles in this symposium extensively and thoughtfully engage questions of crucial importance regarding diversity in (American) political science, particularly the situation of and for women in the profession, past and present. Furthermore, they present a number of arguments and recommendations about how the situation can be changed in the future. The commentaries are notable in being at once realistic and idealistic, descriptive and prescriptive, theoretical and concrete, and informed by an array of evidence and critical insights. They inspire as well as give guidance on how to achieve aspirations. Indeed, for these and other reasons the symposium might be more accurately titled “How Political Science Can Become More Diverse—and (therefore) More Equal…and Better!” In any case, I am honored to have been asked to offer some comments as part of this endeavor, though it is difficult to add much to the perceptive essays which are the core of the symposium. I should also note that I will comment on issues largely as they are presented in the symposium and on questions that emerge in my mind from that reading; that is, I acknowledge that the present symposium, as wide-ranging as it is, does not exhaust the array of questions and debate associated with gender diversity in academic disciplines.

PS: Political Science & PoliticsVolume 48Issue 3