UW-Madison psychology professor Markus Brauer will teach a public seminar Feb. 9 at Madison Public Library that will focus on strategies supported by extensive research to best reduce discrimination in the workplace.
Brauer said the problem with the majority of diversity training programs is that the techniques taught are not backed by any substantial research, according to a university release.
“Everyone has an opinion about diversity, and many people believe they know what should be done—if only we did this and this, then the whole issue would be solved,” Brauer said in the release. “The only problem is if you subject many of those ideas to empirical tests, they don’t hold up.”
Though research on how best to reduce implicit biases is a relatively new study, Brauer said that he has made great progress in the field with the help of other UW-Madison colleagues.
Brauer focuses on teaching people to strive towards a common identity instead of simply acknowledging differences.
“Among UW students there may be African-American students, Hispanic students, Native American students and Caucasian students, but together we’re all Badgers. Everything that fosters identifying with that larger group has a positive effect,” Brauer said in the release.