Institutional Barriers, Strategies, and Benefits to Increasing the Representation of Women and Men of Color in the Professoriate

Looking Beyond the Pipeline
Reference work entry
Part of the Higher Education: Handbook of Theory and Research book series (HATR, volume 35)


Women and men of color represent growing populations of the undergraduate and graduate student populations nationwide; however, in many cases, this growth has not translated to greater faculty representation. Despite student demands, stated commitments to diversity, and investments from national organizations and federal agencies, the demographic characteristics of the professoriate look remarkably similar to the faculty of 50 years ago. Many strategies to increase faculty diversity focus on increasing representation in graduate education, skill development, and preparation for entry into faculty careers. While these needs and strategies are important to acknowledge, this chapter primarily addresses how institutions promote and hinder advances in faculty diversity. Specifically, extant literature is organized into a conceptual framework (the Institutional Model for Faculty Diversity) detailing how institutional structures, policies, and interactions with faculty colleagues and students shape access, recruitment, and retention in the professoriate, focusing on the experiences of women and men of color. A failure to address these challenges has negative implications for teaching, learning, and knowledge generation; consequently, this review also presents research documenting how women and men of color uniquely contribute to the mission and goals of US higher education.


Faculty Women Underrepresented racial and ethnic minorities Identity Racism Intersectionality Sexism Equity and inclusion Faculty hiring Institutional reward systems Faculty persistence and retention Campus climate Organizational change for diversity and inclusion Career development Mentoring 


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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2020

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.University of MarylandCollege ParkUSA

Section editors and affiliations

  • Laura W. Perna
    • 1
  • Ann Austin
    • 2
  • Linda Eisenmann
  • Pamela Eddy
    • 3
  • Adrianna Kezar
    • 4
  • Anne-Marie Nunez
  • Shouping Hu
  • Anna Neumann
    • 5
  • Nicholas A Bowman
  • Marvin Titus
  • Nicholas Hillman
    • 6
  1. 1.Graduate School of EducationUniversity of PennsylvaniaPhiladelphiaUSA
  2. 2.Michigan State UniversityEast LansingUSA
  3. 3.College of William and MaryWilliamsburgUSA
  4. 4.School of EducationUniversity of Southern CaliforniaLos AngelesUSA
  5. 5.Higher and Postsecondary EducationTeachers College, Columbia UniversityNew York CityUSA
  6. 6.University of WisconsinMadisonUSA

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