HE Institutions Set Goals to Eradicate Inequality
Wittenborg Pledges Commitment to Diversity along with Other Amsterdam Institutions
Wittenborg University of Applied Sciences, together with other institutions in Amsterdam, has pledged its commitment to ensuring higher education gets more inclusive, diverse and more societally engaged by signing the 'Education Agreement'. Wittenborg's Amsterdam campus is located in the southeast part of the city. The institutions that co-signed the pledge are the University of Amsterdam, Wittenborg, The Hague Hotel School, InHolland University of Applied Sciences, Amsterdam University of Applied Sciences, the Gerrit Rietveld Academy, Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam, the Amsterdam Art University of Applied Sciences and the iPabo University of Applied Sciences.
Amsterdam is one of the most diverse cities in the world. Nonetheless, according to the signees it has become "painfully obvious" from discussions the past few months that inequality is a reality in the education sector, the labour market, the art and culture world, the media and the political stage. "And it manifests itself in racism and discrimination against people of colour," the document reads.
"Despite the fact that diversity and inclusion are high on many institutions' agendas – many even have diversity officers – there is still much to do in terms of concrete action." The signees are convinced that if they start working together and sharing ideas, instead of operating as an island, more could be achieved.
With the Education Agreement, the institutions seek to commit themselves to concrete, measurable goals to fight the lack of equal opportunity and prioritise representativity and inclusion.
The 5 goals the agreement commits itself to are:
- Promoting equal access and equal opportunity
- Fighting against the lack of representation and diversity in management, academic staff, support staff, students and advisory boards
- Critically looking at current academic content and informal production of knowledge and how it is shared as well as including a variety of perspectives
- Establishing better contact with the city as a learning environment
- Making everyone in the academic community feel at home and safe
by James Wittenborg
©Wittenborg University Press