Higher Education

, Volume 55, Issue 1, pp 69–92 | Cite as

Creating a web of support: an important leadership strategy for advancing campus diversity

  • Adrianna Kezar
  • Peter Eckel
  • Melissa Contreras-McGavin
  • Stephen John Quaye


Research demonstrates that leadership, particularly among presidents, is important for moving a diversity agenda forward and make appreciable progress on it. The research questions pursued here are: What is the role of the college president in advancing a diversity agenda? What strategies do presidents identify as important to facilitating a diversity agenda? There were three main findings: (1) strategies are deployed in a non-linear way best represented through a web metaphor, (2) six sets of actors that serve as key nodes on the web and specific strategies were crucial to enhancing and deepening the web-developing an internal network, hiring, mentoring, partnering with faculty on the curriculum, supporting student affairs staff, working directly with and learning from students, and establishing external networks; and, (3) strategies within the human resource frame are noted by presidents as particularly important to moving a diversity agenda forward.


College presidents Diversity agendas Change Leadership 


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Copyright information

© Springer Science + Business Media B.V. 2007

Authors and Affiliations

  • Adrianna Kezar
    • 1
  • Peter Eckel
    • 2
  • Melissa Contreras-McGavin
    • 1
  • Stephen John Quaye
    • 3
  1. 1.University of Southern CaliforniaLos AngelesUSA
  2. 2.American Council on EducationWashingtonUSA
  3. 3.University of MarylaneCollege ParkUSA

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