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Special Issue Call for Papers: Ethical Higher Education in the Anti-DEI Legislative Climate

June 17, 2024

While higher education has become increasingly accessible to diverse populations of students over generations, recent legislation at both the state and federal levels risks undermining this progress. In addition to barriers to access, programs focused on educating students to embrace and effectively and ethically navigate diverse environments are at risk.

It is our pleasure to announce a call for manuscript proposals for a special issue of the Journal of College and Character on Ethical Higher Education in the Anti-DEI Legislative Climate. In this special issue, we invite authors to consider the following questions as they craft their proposal:

  • What is the history of anti-DEI initiatives, what should we learn from it, and how should we respond?
  • What is the relationship between the current discourse on nativism, racism, sexism, and/or other aspects of oppression and the contemporary enactment of anti-DEI initiatives?
  • How are higher education leaders making the case for diversity with public officials in states that have enacted or are currently considering anti-DEI legislation?
  • Are there any institutions of higher education that could be considered models for navigating anti-DEI legislation? What best practices could we learn from them?
  • How are anti-DEI initiatives impacting student, faculty, and/or staff mental health?
  • How are anti-DEI initiatives impacting pedagogy?
  • Are there any opportunities for new, creative, and/or innovative approaches to diversity work in universities that have experienced anti-DEI measures?
  • What are higher education institution leaders doing for people who have lost jobs due to the anti-DEI legislation?

Authors may address one or more of these questions or raise their own questions in their proposed work. 

We welcome both empirical and conceptual submissions. We are open to a range of related topics, including (but not limited to) analyses of the nature and range of state and federal DEI legislation; case studies of institutional and university system responses; leadership and advocacy strategies; and other relevant considerations.

Final manuscripts will be no more than 5,000 words (including references). We are interested in diverse (inter)disciplinary perspectives from faculty, practitioners, and students working in all higher education contexts (2-year, 4-year, private, public, etc.) We encourage authors to consider writing in the first person.

Submit your 100–250 word abstract, 100–150 word bio, potential headings/subheadings (optional), and any additional ideas you want to include (optional) to jcc@naspa.org by September 2, 2024.

The timeline for this special edition is as follows:

9/2/24: Proposals due

9/9/24: Invitations for full manuscripts sent

10/18/24: Manuscript drafts due

11/18/24: Feedback sent to authors

12/2/24: Manuscripts due to editors

February, 2025: Publication