Facing Criticism Over Its Commitment to Racial Diversity, the American Economic Association Changes Policy on Job Postings

Three weeks ago the JBHE Weekly Bulletin reported that the American Economic Association deleted the following statement from a job posting submitted for display on the AEA Web site: “The university welcomes applications from women and underrepresented ethnic, racial, and cultural groups and from people with disabilities.” The AEA stated that it would publish notices that say a university is an equal opportunity employer or favors diversity. But it would not allow the mention of any particular group.

After the group was widely criticized for this policy, the AEA has had a change of heart. At its recent annual meeting in Chicago, the AEA’s executive committee approved a new policy where specific groups could be mentioned if that group was underrepresented in the profession and where race-based affirmative action measures would be legal under federal law.