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Equity and DiversityEvidence-based Practices
Share your successful strategy with the field
What creative strategy has your science center or museum developed or adapted and institutionalized to become a more inclusive institution?
  • Has this strategy been in place long enough to yield positive results?
  • Is it an innovative way of using one or more resources?
  • Has it generated positive recognition from the community?

The Equity and Diversity Initiative, launched by ASTC in 2001, uses the term "diversity" to refer to the differences among persons in terms of their national origin, gender, race, culture, socio-economic class, religion, sexual orientation, physical or cognitive ability, age, and/or family structure. "Equity" refers to a state of justice or fairness that takes into account all relevant factors, data, and history. Equity is reflected by the policies and practices established to achieve and sustain diversity.

As a follow-up to the Initiative's request for member institutions to set goals and establish benchmarks, we are issuing a call for plans, policies, benchmarks, practices, programs, materials, and partnerships that have had a positive effect on ASTC members' efforts to create more diverse and inclusive institutions.

ASTC's Equity and Diversity Committee invites you to submit your strategy as a promising practice to share with colleagues in our field. Reviewed submissions will be posted on the ASTC web site and may be featured in ASTC Dimensions.

We are interested in strategies developed to address one or more of the following seven areas of concern (examples of the kinds of strategies are listed for each area):

Planning and Implementation
  • Establishing institutional diversity programs and policies at your institution
  • Setting and monitoring benchmarks
Communication Strategies
  • Disseminating the diversity program throughout your institution
  • Listening and responding to employees’ feedback
Professional Support and Development Strategies
  • Recruiting and hiring to achieve and maintain diversity
  • Mentoring, assisting, and promoting staff from diverse backgrounds
  • Monitoring retention rates
  • Accommodating the needs of a diverse workforce
  • Policies and procedures for assuring accountability in following diversity policies
  • Communicating diversity policies and procedures to entire staff
  • Providing staff training to build and maintain the competencies required to do the above
Leadership Support
  • Securing commitment and accountability from the board of directors
  • Communicating commitment to staff
  • Increasing board diversity
  • Implementing diversity leadership training for senior level staff
  • System for collecting, maintaining, and reviewing data on progress toward meeting diversity objectives.
  • Development and monitoring of internal benchmarks
Inclusiveness in Exhibits, Programs, and Audiences
  • Formalized procedures for including equity policies and/or diversity goals in planning exhibits, signage, and print materials
  • Procedures for including equity policies and/or diversity goals in planning and implementing internal and external (outreach) programs
  • Strategies for sustaining the involvement of audiences from underserved populations
  • Strategies for increasing membership among underserved populations
Community Participation Strategies
  • Working effectively with underserved segments of the community
  • Securing advice and feedback from underserved populations in the community
  • Establishing and maintaining partnerships with organizations that represent underserved communities
  • Marketing to diverse audiences, both current and potential
  • Developing a deeper understanding of the cultures of underserved communities.

Submission and Selection Process

1. Please describe your promising practice on the downloadable Promising Practices form (Microsoft Word format). No hand-written entries, please.

Promising Practices (35 KB)

2. All entries will be reviewed by members of ASTC's Equity and Diversity Committee. Strategies deemed adaptable by other institutions will be edited and posted in the Equity and Diversity section of the Resource Center of the ASTC web site.

Questions? Contact Laura Huerta Migus, Director, Equity & Diversity, at or 202/783-7200 x127.

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