UVA Darden Executive Education and Lifelong Learning hosted Ideas to Action: New Frontiers in Diversity and Inclusion, 5 December 2019 at UVA Darden DC Metro in Rosslyn, VA. Over fifty leaders from a wide range of public and private organizations discussed the importance and impact of making diversity and inclusion part of the fabric of business strategy. Martin Davidson, Professor of Business Administration and Chief Diversity Officer at UVA Darden and Valerie Purdie-Greenaway, Associate Professor of Psychology at Columbia, facilitated the day. They shared their latest insights and research about a framework for enterprise D&I, the science and practice of D&I, and organizational barriers to catalyzing D&I.

Many of the participants expressed that implementing and sustaining the momentum and integrity of an organization’s D&I efforts is enormously challenging when the organization and its employees are navigating a tumultuous landscape. Leadership changes, organizational restructuring, responding to an external VUCA environment all impact an organization’s ability to build and nurture a sustainable D&I strategy. The diverse background and experiences of the participants added a critical element to the learning. In small group conversations and a class debrief, they debated how a CHRO should proceed in a real life case where a CEO was pushing to include D&I as a business imperative.

Participants shared how the faculty provided stimulating and relevant content that they will share with their colleagues and use for designing and leading D&I initiatives.  They also enjoyed the facility and meeting other intriguing and diverse participants that are now part of their network. Hear feedback from a couple of the participants in the videos below.

We’re finalizing plans for new Ideas to Action events in 2020, which will focus on such topics as AI, business in society, strategy in the digital age, and the future of work.