Political Participation

Gender and Public Policy Seminar: Promoting Diversity in Organizations





The Gender and Public Policy Seminar has been designed to give students an opportunity to engage with leading-edge scholars and practitioners working to advance gender equality. Because the subject of “gender and public policy” is too wide ranging and global to address within a single semester, we aim to focus the course each year on a “spotlight” issue. 
The spotlight focus for the Spring 2020 semester is promoting race and gender equality at work. More specifically, the seminar will cover organizationally-relevant research on workplace discrimination, and offer a model of organizational change. Coverage of these topics will include race, gender, and intersectional perspectives. The research will include some international comparative perspectives but will be primarily U.S.-based.
The class meets Tuesdays and Thursdays. The first and final weeks of the semester will be devoted, respectively, to framing the course and presenting on students’ field projects. Students will work in groups on seminar-relevant research projects for real clients engaged in promoting diversity, equity and inclusion at work. On all other Tuesdays, students will take turns leading a class discussion of the assigned readings. On Thursdays, students will participate in a research seminar with invited speakers. The Thursday sessions will be hosted by the HKS Women and Public Policy Program (WAPPP) and be open to the HKS community. Readings for the Tuesday class sessions will provide background and a broader research perspective on the Thursday presentations. We will work to arrange opportunities for interested students to meet with the visiting speakers.
This course is likely to be particularly beneficial to students who are interested in diversity, equity, and inclusion in the workplace, and who may have interests in pursuing a career in diversity consulting. Our primary objective is to equip students with a theory-based understanding of the primary obstacles to diversity, equity, and inclusion in the workplace and with a quiver of interventions that will create social justice transformation at the level of individual, organization, and society.

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2019 May 07

How Women Saved Rwanda

6:00pm to 8:00pm


Johm F. Kennedy, Jr. Forum

Twenty-five years ago, the African nation of Rwanda was ripped apart by a genocide that left nearly a million dead. The untold story is that when the bloodshed ended, women not only buried the dead and cared for orphaned children, they drove a recovery that laid a foundation for their current political and economic power. Join our conversation with the visionary pioneers who carved out unlikely new roles for themselves, creating stability and reconciliation in genocide’s wake. Moderated by Ambassador Swanee Hunt, Founder of the Women and Public Policy Program...

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2019 Apr 23

Women, Peace & Power

6:00pm to 8:00pm


Wexner Building, Room 436

Between 1990 and 2017, 92% of peace negotiators were men. Women, Peace & Power follows the stories of female activists, politicians, and ordinary citizens in Afghanistan, Liberia, and Northern Ireland as they try to influence peace talks against all odds. 

While some of these peacebuilders use sit-ins and mass rallies to push for change, others win elections to negotiate at the peace table. All face challenges to their authority and legitimacy as they attempt to steer their countries away from war.

A panel discussion will follow the...

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2019 Feb 20

Unpacking White Feminism

11:40am to 1:00pm


Room 434 AB, Wexner Building, Harvard Kennedy School

Explore the history of feminism through the lens of race with Rachel Cargle. Uncover layers of unlearned details, revealing the problematic effects that white centered activism has had on the past and present state of the feminist movement. She leaves her audience with new knowledge, meaningful tools, and powerful action items toward a more intentional and inclusive feminism.

This event is co-sponsored by the Gender Policy Union, Black Student Union, Degree Programs and  Student Affais (DPSA) and Women and Public Policy Program (WAPPP) at Harvard Kennedy School...