Our Commitment to Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion

Three interlocking circles with "Action & Accountability; Cultural Competency & Awareness; and Education & Engagement" written inside them.

IIE’s commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI), now and throughout our history, is a critical part of our effort to engage thoughtfully with all of our internal and external constituents around the world, and reaffirms our deep commitment to these principles. We believe that racism and inequality are and have been inherently contradictory to our mission. And while IIE has worked for over a century to build a more peaceful, equitable world, we recognize that there is much work yet to do. We support programs with a universal commitment to diversity, equity and inclusion, multiculturalism, and international understanding and cooperation.

In 2020, we made a concerted effort to codify these practices and develop a comprehensive DEI strategy that drives us to be even more intentional and accountable, both internally and externally. This strategy includes three elements – Action & Accountability, Cultural Competency & Awareness, and Education & Engagement — to ensure we focus our efforts and make measurable progress with our DEI initiatives. Within that strategy are specific focus areas that encompass the five domains of Talent, Work, Governance, Opportunity, and Training. This past year, we made important strides executing our strategy while establishing a strong DEI foundation from which we will continue to grow.

Actions We've Taken:

  • Incorporated DEI as one of the key strategic pillars guiding IIE for the next five years
  • Continued the Annual Workplace Diversity Training that is required of all IIE team members and Board members
  • Launched employee affinity groups to provide a platform of support and provide IIE with feedback to help drive positive change within the organization
  • Hosted virtual roundtables and internal forums on race, racism, bias, and understanding triggers
  • Formalized training to educate team members on creating an inclusive organization
  • Implemented DEI recruitment video series and training for hiring managers and candidates
  • Partnered with organizations that share DEI values to contribute to the intersection of DEI and international education (see DEI Partnerships below for more details)
  • Launched and coordinated the National Academy for International Education, galvanizing a group of distinguished thinkers to shape and advance international higher education, with a focus on reducing inequities in the field

DEI Partnerships:

IIE's commitment to DEI is integral to our core mission. Our efforts engage our internal organization without losing focus on our external environment, convening thought leaders and practitioners worldwide to advance this mission.

In 2020, IIE and Dickinson College embarked on a new partnership developing a virtual workshop series. This collaboration leverages the strengths of two institutions with a common commitment to international education and a shared mission of building inclusive, equitable and sustainable communities. Both institutions bring deep expertise and a global network that provides an opportunity to reimagine an international education framework that incorporates global, intercultural and equity/inclusion lenses.

  • ‘Moving From Inclusivity Talk to Equity in Action in International Education Leadership’ (2020-2021): IIE and Dickinson conducted workshops examining the under-explored intersection between intercultural and global learning and diversity, equity, and inclusion—work that has been traditionally siloed—and focused on practical application for professionals to initiate action on their campuses and in their organizations. The two-day workshops attracted nearly 230 participants from 83 institutions located in 5 countries.
  • ‘Building Bridges: Committing to Global Equity and Justice in International Education’ (2022): This expanded, more robust workshop series took a deeper dive into building equitable and inclusive communities aiming to bridge the gap by bringing practitioners, scholars, and learners from across disciplines, backgrounds, and cultures together to accelerate learning and co-create collaborative approaches to build trust, equity, and justice across cultures for meaningful change locally and globally. Three one-day workshops took place in the Spring, and 43 participants representing 32 institutions/organizations, across the U.S. and from India and Nepal, committed their time in and out of the workshops to learning, sharing, and applying knowledge and the experience to their work and communities to move the needle towards change.