Saturday, June 5, 2010

Diversity of Actual Hires vs. Diversity of Offers Made

When we raised concerns about the lack of women and people of color hired to Harvard academic faculty positions during the Kagan deanship, some of her defenders responded by suggesting that we were failing to examine the diversity of offers made (sometimes these were offers for Visiting Professorships--temporary positions). As an employee in the Clinton White House, Elena Kagan showed some interest in promoting her office's diverse hiring record (DPC is the the Domestic Policy Council), even going so far as to carefully excise a man from the draft accounting so that the office looked more diverse. Of course, this document (seemingly misfiled under "Hate Crimes" in the Clinton Library document disclosure) does not show that she herself promoted diversity or thought that this was important (I assume that she does on both counts, on the basis of the strong testimonials delivered publicly by well-respected colleagues at Harvard Law School), but only that she recognized the public interest in these numbers. But the numbers that Kagan approves focus, as we did, on actual hiring, not on offers made.

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