All things considered, should we get rid of equal opportunity programs? Certainly not. But I think we should forsake the collective delusion that having an equal opportunity program is equivalent to being an equal opportunity employer. The discrepancy between public commitment and actual progress seems to stem largely from the conviction that, if put on paper, diversity will magically result in inclusiveness.
Ambiguous evaluation criteria and the sole dependency on one person for decision making about promotions should be banned.
We do not allow academics to give lectures without having acquired the necessary knowledge and skills – why do we allow academics to manage a diverse workforce without having acquired the necessary knowledge and skills?
Given the potential backlash, I did not take the decision to expose myself through this essay lightly.
Susanne Täuber: Undoing Gender in Academia: Personal Reflections on Equal Opportunity Schemes. In: Journal of Management Studies 2020.
Open access: https://doi.org/10.1111/joms.12516