Topic: The Psychological Science of Racism
Panelists will discuss the psychological science of how racist attitudes and behaviors are formed, and how they can be influenced using science.
Experts can also discuss a learning module on Asian American bias which was created by APS member Mahzarin Banaji at Havard University.
Journalists and editors are invited to attend this live virtual event and ask questions either on camera or we can relay your questions to the panelists. Register to attend and receive the on-demand recording after the session is concluded.
- Priscilla Lui, Ph.D. - Assistant Professor of Psychology at Southern Methodist University. Dr. Lui conducts research on minority mental health and health disparities. She is interested in how people from diverse sociocultural backgrounds make sense of the world, and how their lived experiences associated with culture, ethnicity, and race affect their psychopathology and addictive behaviors. Using a social ecological framework, she studies intercultural contact (e.g., acculturation, discrimination), close social relationships (e.g., romantic relationship, intergenerational conflict), and intrapersonal characteristics (e.g., personality, cultural orientations) as determinants of psychopathology, primarily alcohol (mis)use. Through this program of research, Dr. Lui seeks to inform and influence clinical interventions that are most effective in alleviating distress and improving psychological functioning across diverse ethnocultural groups. To the extent that knowledge on the prediction and explanation of human psychology only is as good as our ability to assess these concepts, she has the expertise in scale development and evaluation of the quality of psychological measures. Dr. Lui was named a Rising Star by the Association for Psychological Science and was selected by the Society for Clinical Psychology to receive the 2019 Samuel M. Turner Early Career Award for Distinguished Contributions to Diversity in Clinical Psychology.
- Jackson G. Lu, Ph.D. - Mitsui Career Development Professor and an Assistant Professor of Work and Organization Studies at the MIT Sloan School of Management. Dr. Lu is the Mitsui Career Development Assistant Professor of Work and Organization Studies at MIT Sloan, where he teaches Negotiation. His research focuses on culture and globalization. He was named one of the 40 Best Business School Professors Under 40 by Poets & Quants, and one of “30 Thinkers to Watch” for his research on the “Bamboo Ceiling.”
- Michael Kraus, Ph.D. - Associate Professor of Organizational Behavior at the Yale School of Management. Michael Kraus is a social psychologist who specializes in the study of inequality. His current work explores the behaviors and emotional states that maintain and perpetuate economic and social inequality in society. He also studies the emotional processes that allow individuals and teams to work together more effectively. Michael’s research has appeared in Psychological Review, Perspectives on Psychological Science, and Journal of Personality and Social Psychology. He currently teaches Power & Politics and Global Virtual Teams in the Yale SOM core curriculum. Michael is also the director of Yale’s summer internship in organizational behavior.
- Sapna Cheryan, Ph.D. - Professor, University of Washington. Sapna Cheryan is a professor of psychology at the University of Washington. Her research investigates the role of cultural stereotypes in causing and perpetuating racial and gender disparities in U.S. society. She has published numerous articles on these topics in journals such as Psychological Science, Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, and Psychological Review. In 2009, Dr. Cheryan received the National Science Foundation CAREER Award. In 2012-2013, she was a visiting scholar at the Russell Sage Foundation in New York City, and in 2016-2017, was a Lenore Annenberg and Wallis Annenberg Fellow in Communication at the Center for Advanced Study in the Behavioral Sciences at Stanford University. Her work has been cited widely in media outlets, including in the New York Times, NPR, and Washington Post.
When: Wednesday, March 31, 2PM-3PM EDT
Where: Newswise Live Zoom Room
This live event will also be recorded and transcribed for use by media and communicators after it is concluded. All registered participants will receive a copy of the transcript, so even if you can't make this event, we recommend you register.
Thom: Welcome and thank you for joining today's Newswise Live Expert Panel, we’re working today with the Association for Psychological Science to bring together 4 experts to talk about the psychological science of Racism and other topics and issues related to that. I want to introduce first of all Charles Blue from the APS, to give us some overview of the scope and intent of today's discussion.
Charles: Thanks Thom, I would first like to thank our panelists and also the team at Newswise who have helped putting this together. APS the Association for Psychological Science has been looking into the underpinnings of racism for many years, as a matter of fact on our website we do have a curated collection of lay language research on racism that we’ve done before, but we also wanted to present the latest, most current information – particularly in light of recent news and the challenges that are faced. So, after pulling the leadership we came up with a team of people who are doing really outstanding forefront work and I'm looking forward to hearing from them, so thank you.
Thom: Thank you Charles. I’d like to introduce our first panelist – we have with us here Michael Kraus, he is PhD – Associate Professor of organizational behavior at the Yale School of Management. Dr. Kraus thanks so much for joining us – I will share some slides you have that you’d like to show as you talk about some of the work you’ve done.
Dr. Kraus: Thanks Thom, so I'm really excited to be here today, and talk to you about some of my work. I'm a psychologist by training and currently a professor at Yale University and I study the psychological components of societal inequality.
Today I'm going to talk to you about research on American narratives of racial progress. The general take home is that we have narratives that present a rosy, more just and more equitable picture of what America is, and our psychology combines with these narratives to prevent us from seeing the constant work and struggle that is necessary to produce that more just society that we desire. So that’s the short version of what I’ll talk to you about today.
So, the United States is a country founded on principles of meritocracy and freedom. Life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness are written into our constitution, the American dream is often exported as a sentiment to other countries with many people coming to the US, like members of my own family, seeking a better life and a chance to have their hard work and talents rewarded. Racism is and has always been an obstacle to achievement of the American Dream for minoritized people, but this fact rarely surfaces in our idealized discussions of this nation, sometimes in our history books and in much of our mainstream political discourse. Instead, we have a distorted sense of racial progress, and when people think of American society across time, we may be able to acknowledge some racism in the past, in the history of the US, but aside from that, most Americans believe we have passed into a new era of increasing racial harmony. The horrors of the Chattel Slavery and Jim Crow naturally and automatically undone by our principals of freedom and fairness such as society progresses. Each year we get closer and closer to the ideal of racial equality.
The challenge of narratives of racial progress then is that because of the way people tend to favor social information that is consistent with their own deeply held beliefs, we will often misinterpret contemporary events in society. In line with these idealized notions of America. So, as an example we rely on narratives of racial progress, when we interpret current acts of racism not as racism but as potentially isolated incidents, or as possibly not involving race at all or as may be caused by other factors, or as exaggerated when reported in other ways.
So, we’ve studied narratives for many years – today I’ll show you a couple of our results from studies that underline what we found – in our studies we have this simple methodology where we ask sample of American respondents from different racial and socio-economic backgrounds, to estimate if the average white family has $100 of wealth, how much does the average black family have? We then ask this question across time and compare respondent perceptions to similar time point estimates of black – white wealth and equality, using federal government data.
What we find is a considerable disconnect between perceived and actual black family wealth and a pattern consistent with the application of these racial progress narratives I'm talking about.
So here I show you our data examining perceptions of black wealth, when white wealth is $100 – each individual-colored dot represents a single person's estimate at each time point. Which moves from past – so 1963 the earliest data, to current across the horizontal axis – our latest data was in 2016 – the black circle is a mean in 95% confidence intervals around people's perceptions. The mean estimates show ascending black wealth across time relative to white wealth, indicating a perception of progress towards racial equality in wealth, when compared with the black diamonds though – which are median federal estimates of actual black wealth, you can see that our respondents always overestimate wealth equality, but are particularly likely to do so in the present, where they estimate $90 in black wealth, for every $100 in white wealth. Note here – that actual black family wealth is closer to $11 per $100 dollars of white wealth. So, this is a visual representation of how racial progress narratives obscure the persistence of racial inequality and allude to beliefs about the automatic and natural approach of racial harmony and equity.
So, we are in a period of violence within the Asian and Asian American community that is shocking to many. What the narrative of racial progress misses – is the history of violent racism that cycles throughout our communities and conceives of Asian and Asian American people as foreign. As being untrustworthy, as being carriers of disease. This through line of violence is hard to see when under the shadow of this mythology of racial progress that I'm talking about, but the through line starts with the US’s long history of dehumanization in Asia, extends to Chinese exclusion in 1882 to intermittent prisons in 1942, to spikes in South Asian hate crimes in 2001 and again in 2017 – all the way to the current moment of violence sweeping our nation. Narratives of racial progress contribute to our collective shock and surprise around these events, when the reality is that these events reveal a deep and troubling recurring pattern across our history.
So truly fighting racism and engaging in anti-racist action, will involve undoing narratives of racial progress, and this will not be easy. There is a deep history of ignorance around racism in the United States that ripples through our schools and our discourse and leads us to rely on time and patience to produce equity and justice. When history shows again and again that this expectation is unrealistic.
A reorientation and re-education is necessary. Some of our early work indicates that such efforts to re-education could be fruitful. In our research people also overestimate the status of Asian Americans in the United States – thinking that they have more wealth than they actually do relative to whites. In one way we found to combat this is by reminding people that Asian Americans are not a monolithic racial group. That Asian folks in the US come from distinct histories and immigration trajectories.
In one experiment as an example, asking people to consider the differing economic status of 10 distinct Asian Origin sub groups, improved responded accuracy about the economic status of the Asian Americans in the US as a whole, and this was relative to a control group that rated the economic status of Asian Americans before considering these sub groups. So, the effect in the study is momentary right, it's right after this manipulation – truly effective educational initiatives will have to scale the pervasiveness of narratives of racial progress. Nevertheless, raising broader awareness of histories and the variety of what it means to be Asian and Asian American in one potentially promising way – is to intervene on these narratives. So, beyond re-educating people, undoing narratives of racial progress will also involve two other things – reflexivity and solidarity.
Reflexivity involves those who conduct psychological science, those who report in news media, who retell the stories of racism happening now, to contend with how their own experiences inform how they cover these topics. A true undoing of narratives of racial progress that occlude our understanding of contemporary racism, will involve us opening psychological science, opening news rooms, to minoritize scholars historically left outside the academy. Without this opening up, of ending how this narrative shapes the very scholarship we conduct, and the methods we use – will be challenging. On the topic of solidarity – undoing the narratives of racial progress, ultimately relies on all of us collectively wanting the American dream to not be some idealized fantasy, but to be real for all Americans.
In our studies, one of the persistent findings is that white folks tend to be most likely to subscribe to over estimates of racial equality relative to other groups, despite these actions and policies that promote racial justice, student debt cancellation, $15 minimum wage, they also benefit white folks. We must all share in our scholarship and in our lives in the difficult and constant struggle for real racial equality, cause it is not natural, automatic or guaranteed – and with that I’ll end – I want to thank you for your attention – our lab is at CSNeqaulity.org if you want to see more of our research.
Thom: Thank you so much Dr. Kraus. We will have time for some Q&A after each of the panelists have given a bit of their presentations, so if anyone does have questions please chat them to me and if you have questions specifically for Dr. Kraus please indicate that when you send me your question. Next I would like to introduce Jackson Lu – he is a PhD, he’s the Mitsui Career Development professor and an Assistant professor of work and organization studies at the MIT Sloan School of Management.
Dr. Lu: Excellent, thank you so much for the invitation, I'm very excited to share some of our recent research about the bamboo ceiling phenomenon.
So as some of you know, Asians are known as the Model Minority in the United States, where one joke is that – I must get an A because I am an Asian – not a Bsian. Indeed, Asians have the highest educational attainment in the United States and also the highest income and lowest unemployment rate. So, based on these statistics I just presented, you might think – well aren’t Asians doing just fine? Why do we need to allocate extra attention to them? But the question is – if Asians are the model minority doing just fine, we would expect Asians to be over represented in leadership positions in the United States – but can you think of any prominent Asian leaders? I think precisely because Asians are believed to be the model minority doing just fine, they have received limited attention from scholars and practitioners alike. Yet statistics suggest that Asians may face a bamboo ceiling. For example – if you look at statistics about Wall Street – you’ll see that although Asians are well represented at the professional employee level, there are relatively few Asians at the top executive levels. Similarly in the US law firms, 11% of the associates were Asians, only 3% of the partners were Asians – where Asians actually have the lowest partner to associate ratio.
Even in the US tech firms where Asians are the most likely to be hired, representing over 30% of the workforce, they're actually the least likely to be in leadership positions, representing less than 15% of the executives.
Despite the statistics, there are a number of problems – because so far there has been very little research on the bamboo ceiling phenomenon. And one limitation is that most statistics I just showed you, they tend to lump all Asians together, which means the scope of the bamboo ceiling remains unclear, and second – as you saw most of the statistics are descriptive, which means that the mechanisms, the underlying reasons remain unclear. Which means that the mechanisms, the underlying reasons remain unclear. So, to answer both questions – in my courses I reconducted a host of studies to systematically examine the bamboo Ceiling phenomenon. Understanding both the scope and mechanisms. In terms of the scope of the bamboo ceiling phenomenon, we compared the two largest Asian sub groups in the United States – East Asians versus South Asians. Now if you think about it, in the United States there are actually quite a number of prominent South Asian CEOs- including the CEO of Google, Adobe, CitiGroup and so on – Pepsi co – whereas it is actually very difficult to think of any prominent East Asian leaders, and this is indeed what we found.
So in one of the studies we looked at archival data, we simply coded the CEO’s of the S&P 500 companies which are the 500 largest US companies that capture about 80% of the market capitalisation and we simply tallied East Asian, South Asian and White CEO’s based on their biographies.
So for example, you can see that in the year 2017, there were only 3 East Asian CEOs versus 13 South Asian CEO’s and this is important because it's actually a consistent pattern across all those years.
You see the same finding when we broadened the set to S&P 1500+ companies – which represent over 90% of the US market capitalisation. What’s more important is that the ones we adjust for population, the discrepancy between South Asians and East Asians is even bigger, because in the United States the East Asian population is about 1.6 times larger than the South Asian population. So when we adjust for population we see that East Asians are really under represented, whereas South Asians are actually quite well represented – for example compared to White CEO’s.
So the first key finding from our study is that East Asians but not South Asians tend to face bamboo ceilings in the United States, and indeed we see the same pattern over and over in different contexts. For example in this field study in 16 S&P 500 level companies – where we had a large sample of East Asians and South Asians and we looked at -who currently occupied executive or senior leadership positions, and you can see the discrepancy is about 10% - and importantly the same pattern existed for both foreign born East Asians versus Foreign born South Asians, but also US born East Asians and US born South Asians. So that language – English fluency is not a key driver here, otherwise you would not see the discrepancy among the US born East Asians and the US born South Asians.
So the second key finding from our research is that the bamboo ceiling exists for both foreign born East Asians and US born East Asians.
So now I've shown you the descriptive finding about the scope, now let's try to understand the mechanism.
What could be some potential mechanisms of the bamboo ceiling, why does it exist?
So based on a lot of interviews with diversity offices, employees and managers- we decided to explore a broad range of mechanisms. Due to the time limit I will discuss two mechanisms – the intra personal mechanism – motivation and the Inter personal mechanism of assertiveness. While accounting for different demographics – for example is it English fluency – is it that for example South Asians have higher education or higher socio-economic status or so on, so we counted those statistically. So let's first consider the intra personal mechanism or motivation – which the simple question is – are Asians motivated to be leaders to start with, and there are mixed perspectives because on the one hand – Asians are known as quants rather than poets – so one stereotype that may be Asians are less interested in leadership, they are more interested in accounting and computer science. Yet an alternative perspective suggests that Asians do aspire to status, to leadership positions that non-Asians. So according to one survey – 64% of Asians aspire to high-ranking jobs, versus 52% of whites, and consistently across our studies the third key finding is that actually East Asians are equally motivated to be leaders as South Asians and whites. Suggested that the bamboo ceiling is not really driven by East Asians lack of motivation.
The second key mechanism we discussed or examined is the inter personal mechanism of assertiveness, which is defined as the tendency to stand up and speak out for one's interests and concerns when appropriate. So why is assertiveness important? It is important because according to implicit leadership theory individuals are less likely to attain leadership positions when their characteristics fail to match the cultural prototype of leaders.
Well in the United States the prototypical US leader is someone who is assertive, because asserting one's opinions signals confidence, motivation and conviction. So let's think about cultural differences of assertiveness. Strongly influenced for example by confusion-ism, East Asian cultures are characterised by humility, conformity, and interpersonal harmony, as evidence by proverbs such as – the nail that sticks out gets hammered down, versus the western proverb such as – the Squeaky wheel gets the oil.
So for example in one such study researchers showed the same photo to American participants and East Asian participants and what they found is – American participants are more likely to say – well clearly the person on the left is leading, is leading in the front, versus East Asian cultures the participants were more likely to say – well actually the person in the back – the protective father figure is the prototypical leader. So you can already see some of the culture differences. Well what about South Asian cultures? It turns out that on average South Asian cultures also encourage assertiveness in interpersonal communication, as for example elaborated in the book the Argumentative Indian by the Nobel prize winner Amartya Sen, where he discussed how a long tradition of argumentation, debate where people encounter mass arguments and counter arguments spread over incessant debates and disputations which is very common in South Asia – and indeed what we found consistently across our studies was that on average East Asians are less assertive than South Asians and whites -again whether for US Born East Asians or foreign born East Asians and a related key finding is that we see that assertiveness is consistently mediated East Asians under representation in leadership, which means that East Asians but not South Asians hit the bamboo ceiling in the United States partly because East Asians communicate less assertively.
So I think our research offered some important and timely indications - the first thing to note is that the stereotypes that East Asians are non-assertive, can be both descriptive and prescriptive. Which is to say that people not only believe that East Asians are non-assertive, but also believe that East Asians should be non-assertive. And this raises a really important problem because it means that East Asians may face a double blind – which is that if they are not assertive for example – due to their culture upbringing – they will not emerge as leaders. But the problem is that – if they are assertive, then they may be viewed as too assertive for East Asians, people might say – oh that East Asian is too assertive for East Asians – and related practical implication is that – here I will emphasise the onus of breaking the bamboo ceiling should not fall on East Asians themselves. Rather, American organizations first of all should recognise that -instead of thinking – okay, East Asians or Asians are the model minority so we don’t have to pay attention to them, American organisation should be cognizant of the under representation of the East Asians in leadership roles, that is to recognise the bamboo ceiling problem. And they also need to understand the culture differences among different Asian sub groups – so perhaps an East Asian person is not speaking up, it doesn’t necessarily mean that they have no opinion to share, but culturally perhaps they tend to value humility more, and also currently American organisations and society and governmental reports tend to lump all Asians together as a single cultural group – typically in American organisations, there's a single employee resource group for all Asians, without recognising some of the cultural differences.
And last but not least – we encourage American organizations to evolve their implicit prototype of leadership, to really fit an increasingly diversifying workforce and recognise that there can be more than one successful leadership style. There can be more than one successful leadership prototype, which is to say that it's not always the case that the most assertive leaders are the most effective leaders. I think my time is up, if you have more questions please feel free to read our paper published last year, or shoot me an email with any further questions – thank you so much.
Thom: Thank you very much Dr. Lu – next we want to introduce our next panellist and that is Dr. Sapna Cheryan – she is PhD, professor at University of Washington, Dr. Cheryan thank you so much, please go ahead.
Dr. Cheryan: Hi everybody, thank you so much for being here today, I want to acknowledge its another tough week in our country right now, we’ve got so much going on with respect to race, with the trial for the killing of George Floyd and of course these really horrible additional racist attacks on Asian Americans, so I appreciate everyone being here and I'm learning a lot from the other panellists, so thanks a lot for all the great work that you all do.
So in 2015 Nina Davuluri became the first Indian American to receive the Miss America title, and even before she received that title, she started getting immediate backlash – as you can see here, people misidentified her ethnicity, they called her a terrorist, they used phrases like – this is America – and this represents a common theme in the life of Asian Americans – which is to be characterised as foreign and not belonging in the US – and there's also a second stereotype that affects Asian Americans and this is one that you’ve heard about already today, this is the idea that Asian Americans are somehow a model minority, that they're doing better than other racial and ethnic groups – this is an example of that being propagated by Nicholas Kristof, asking why Asian Americans are so good at school?
So in my research I'm really interested in how these two stereotypes of ideas about who Asian Americans are and what they do and what they're like, how they coexist in America and how Asian Americans respond to them and negotiate their own identities with respect to these stereotypes. And I have three takeaways for you today – I'm going to focus mostly on the third one, but I wanted to put up a couple of other important ones and talk about those briefly too – so the first takeaway is that Asian Americans face unique forms of discrimination compared to other racial and ethnic groups, I’ll talk about that for a couple of minutes and I’ll also talk about the idea of the model minority myth and positive stereotypes and how for Asian Americans, being positively stereotyped is not a positive experience. That Asian Americans respond negatively to these positive stereotypes, and then the third idea and the one I’ll spend the most time on is that Asian Americans are not passive in their responses to being characterised as foreign, that they take very specific steps to respond to these and sometimes this can be to their own detriment.
So let me start with the first one – unique forms of discrimination – this is work that I did with my former graduate student Linda Zou, who is now an Assistant professor at university of Maryland, and what we did in this paper is – we asked people in America to just write about the last time that they were discriminated against – to just describe what that experience was like – and so I’ll show you some examples of what they wrote, so this was from a black participant, this is a very typical response from black participants, it was about racial profiling that – I was at a store in the mall that was upscale, that the sales person followed me around the store the entire time I was there. she watched me whenever I touched something. These are typical responses what we got from our LatinX participants – people thought that I was uneducated and low class because of my race which is Hispanic, they assumed that I did not attend college and my parents were illegal immigrants. So you see some similar themes to what we saw at the black participants assumption about class and education and criminality, but you also see this additional perception of not being from America, having your parents be from somewhere else. With our Asian American participants we saw responses that looked like this – we saw evidence of that kind of model minority – so people assume that I know how to fix computers and we also saw evidence of this perpetual foreignness. I was sitting on the subway minding my own business when a belligerent Caucasian came up to stand in front of me. He pulled back his eyes and started yelling – go back to your country! And what we ended up doing is – when we coded these responses, so we quantitively analysed them and we found that indeed the types of prejudice and discrimination that these different racial and ethnic minority groups face in the US are different along the lines of two different dimensions.
The first dimension is this – what you can think of high status to low status dimension which includes things like assumptions about education, about social class and about like not being criminal and then there's this second dimension which came out which is this culturally foreign dimension – this idea of who is American and who belongs in America and conversely who doesn’t belong here and is outside of the American identity and when you look at people's own experiences of prejudice or you look at the way these groups are stereotyped, you see that different groups fall into different quadrants. With white Americans being perceived as the most American and the highest status. Black Americans and native Americans being perceived as lower status in American society and not as American as white Americans, but more American than these other racial and ethnic groups. You see LatinX Americans and Arab Americans being portrayed as low status and culturally foreign and then Asian Americans occupying this distinct unique position of being seen as Culturally foreign and high status at the same time.
So I'm going to talk a little bit about how Asian Americans now respond to that model minority – the kind of being perceived as high status and being communicated through positive stereotypes like Asians are so good at math or Asians are doing so well in the US. So how do Asian Americans respond to that – well we can go back to the Kristoff example and see how Asian Americans responded to that, which wasn’t very positive. Kristoff actually had to write a piece a few weeks later saying that he was still getting indignant emails from Asian Americans and he didn’t understand why. So we wanted to investigate why – why do positive stereotypes which seem on the face of them to be compliments and maybe might be motivating or something like that, why do an Asian Americans not like these – why do they feel so negatively about them?
And what we found is – indeed when you do studies on this, when we did experiments looking at how Asian Americans respond to people who say positive stereotypes about their group, and we did find that Asian Americans dislike white people who state positive stereotypes of their group. And there's many reasons to dislike positive stereotypes, I'm going to talk about one that we found in this paper and that was that – for Asian Americans hearing things like – Asians are so good at math, makes them feel depersonalised , it makes them feel like they're being seen only through the lens of their group membership and being seen as interchangeable with other people in their group and they're being denied their individual traits and attributes and what was interesting about this finding – we didn’t anticipate it at first and then it made perfect sense to us when we found it later – was that this effect of not liking positive stereotypes was particularly strong for US born Asian Americans, and that made sense- because if you think about what we value in American culture, we really value individuality, standing out, being unique, having our own traits and characteristics recognised. So for US born Asian Americans, who are socialised into American culture – that experience of having that individualist taken away is particularly threatening.
So I'm going to go on to the third take away which is that Asian Americans are not passive recipients of this characterisation of them as foreign, but they take very active steps to try to combat this. And we referred to this phenomenon as identity denial, that Asian Americans have their American identities denied and we’ve shown with data that Asian Americans are indeed seen as less American than white Americans in US society and furthermore, Asian Americans know that they're seen this way, so if you ask Asian Americans – how American are you? They will say they're American and if you ask them – how American do you think other Americans think you are – they will say – I don’t think they think I'm very American, so they’re aware that there is a discrepancy between how they see themselves and how others in America see them.
So how do Asian Americans respond to this discrepancy?
Let's take a look at how Nina Davuluri responded – she said that – I sat down with my mom and my sister, asking – why is this happening? And she says – I was born in New York and I've always thought of myself as first and foremost American. So what is she doing here? She is asserting her American identity; she is taking steps to prove to others that she is American and that she belongs in America. And we’ve investigated this process of identity assertion of how Asian Americans go about trying to prove to others that they are American in many different ways – I'm going to talk about one way that Asian Americans do it, and that is with food choices.
So in this paper we looked at whether Asian Americans eat American food in response to not being seen as American as a way to display or to prove to others that they are American – and I’ll talk about one study from this paper, so we had a US Born Asian American and we had them come into our lab one at a time and for half of the Asian Americans- the experimenter met them and said – you must be American to participate in this study. Our participants were all American, they were born in the US, but this was supposed to remind them of that feeling of not being seen as American.
For the other half of the participants the white experimenter just let them in to participate in the study and in this study they were told that this was a study on appetite and cognitive processes and that they would be ordering a food to eat for a second session that they would be returning for later and what we did is we then gave them a menu – an online menu. So we had them go online to a webpage that we had created and we told them that we had accounts at the first two restaurants, at the American and the Asian restaurant – that they could go to either one of these links and they could choose the food and they could tell the experimenter which food they wanted.
The American foods included – we pretested them to be highly American, there were things like hamburger, hot dog etc – and the Asian foods were also pretested to be highly Asian, so what did we find – so here I'm going to show you what happened to the participants in the controlled conditions – so those are the ones who are just invited in and then also the identity denial conditions – so those are the participants who were told – you have to be American to participate and then on the Y axis is which type of food they selected.
So, when they were just left to their own choices, Asian Americans ended up choosing more off the Asian menu than the American menu – but when they had their identities questioned or denied, you saw that pattern flip and in that case Asian Americans became more likely to choose off the American menu.
So, why is this important? Well turns out we also had calorie information and fat information about the foods that they ordered and we actually did go get the food, they did come back and actually ate the food and what we found is that Asian Americans who were in the controlled condition who didn’t have their identified denied ended up consuming fewer calories and less fat than those who had their identities denied and this is because the food on the American menu, the food that people see as the most American, aren’t particularly healthy food.
So I want to close by saying that this process of proving that one is American is a positive that Asian Americans are kind of forced into by society that sees them as not being American, and it's not a prescription, it's not what Asian Americans necessarily should be doing or want to be doing, and its problematic, not only because of the health reasons that I've just suggested, but it also reinforces a very narrow image of what it means to be American. It means - Asian Americans are saying – to be American I have to display that I eat hamburgers and not sushi or whatever and what that ends up doing is that it reinforces an idea that – if you eat sushi then you're not American and that’s not what we want to do. What we want to do instead is broaden the definition of what it means to be an American, so that Asian Americans don’t have to be in this station where they're constantly having their American identities questioned and then having to prove it. So the goal here is really to broaden that identity so that eating sushi could also be seen as American, just as eating hamburgers or pizza.
So I just want to close by saying that – in my work what I try to show is that the positioning of Asian Americans, the racial positioning affects their everyday lives and that Asian Americans are not passive to this positioning but are taking active steps to try to assert their identities, the way they see themselves and this can sometimes be problematic both for themselves, but also for society more broadly. Thanks.
Thom: Thank you so much Dr. Cheryan, and if we have any questions for Dr. Cheryan please do chat those to me and we will get to the Q&A portion after our next presenter. That next presenter is Dr. Priscilla Lui – PhD, assistant professor of psychology at Southern Methodist University, Dr. Lui – thank you so much, please go ahead.
Dr. Lui: Thank you Thom, Thank you for the introduction, I am Priscilla Lui, so far we’ve heard great presentations from psychologists and people in management in organisations – so I'm a clinical psychologist by training, so I'm an assistant professor of psychology at SMU, so I'm going to take a clinical scientific perspective to sort of think about what happens when people encounter racism and discrimination and what can we do about it both as individuals and people around us to help support victims of discrimination.
So, I think my first message is – as we heard just from Dr. Cheryan that discrimination hurts. I think decades of research have really shown that discrimination is really damaging to peoples health outcome, including mental health, physical health and other kinds of health conditions and this is particularly true for people of colour and its also undeniable, repeated messages, data from the centre for control and prevention, as well as the national institute of health have repeatedly recognised that racism and discrimination both drive and sustain ethnic health disparities. What that means is – people of colour are disproportionately affected by higher disease prevalence rates, and also they have longer recovery time, they are more burdened by these negative health conditions and they're also more impacted personally, health wise and economically. So, I think it’s particularly important to recognise that discrimination can occur at very many different levels. So what we typically don’t think about is an idea of systemic and structural discrimination. So, facing many communities of colour, there is really – for example as shown in the picture here, there is a disproportionate degree of policing for certain communities of colour – particularly for African Americans, in the trial for the police killing of George Floyd in Minnesota – so other examples would include people from social economic as well as racial disadvantages, often times don’t have the same degree of access to quality and importantly culturally responsive healthcare in the way that white individuals do. So when they go to the doctor, they might experience longer wait times to be seen by a physician and they might not be listened to based on their health complaints and those are sort of some subtle discrimination experiences and generally that could promote individuals and communities of colours to have distrust to the healthcare system and that’s also furthering the ethnic health disparities that we continue to see.
So discrimination can – out side of this systemic racism or discrimination, we can sort of unpack the manifestation of discrimination at these 3 levels – so at a cultural or societal level for example - a prime example is using these stereotypic images of native American people as mascots for sports team. So that really furthers the stereotypic images and prejudice about native Americans being inferior in terms of their culture and in terms of their practices.
At an institutional level, we’ve heard from Dr. Jackson Lu that both in terms of federal government level, also at an organisational level -there are hiring practices and other kinds of policies that also differentially affect individuals from different communities and different racial lines.
And finally typically we think of discrimination occurring in interpersonal experiences – so what that means is – I'm running into someone of a different racial background and we started talking – I might be treated differently just based on the way that I look, my skin colour, my hair texture and facial features. So, over the past several years or at least 10 years – some people are starting to question that the idea – whether discrimination is still existing and is still impactful. So research continues to show both in terms of social psychology, clinical and counselling psychology that discrimination and experiences with racism are linked robustly to peoples cardio vascular health and from what I study in terms of addictive behaviour and promote alcohol and substance misuse, and certainly for sleep related problems which can exacerbate a host of health and mental health problems and also negatively impact children’s educational performance as well. And as a clinical psychologist we also are worried about stress responses, experiences with depression, anxiety symptoms and even eating pathology. So the reason why people might question – is racism still a thing – is the idea that in the past several years these overt experiences or manifestations of discrimination is no longer really prevalent. So, for example N word – racial slurs are not really as often as several decades ago. Segregation of these hiring practices that overtly, blatantly discriminate certain communities of colour, are not acceptable or even not legal – so the idea that – is discrimination still existing – is actually challenged – some of these experiences of discrimination are actually – and specially in terms of inter personal experiences of discrimination, seem to be increasingly subtle and happening in every day lives.
So for example – as shown here in these pictures, African American individuals are being assumed to being unintelligent or presumed to engage in criminal activities and as my colleagues have mentioned – Latinos and Asian American individuals are perpetually being considered to being foreign just because of their race, regardless of their nativity or immigration statuses. So, if you take out your phone and link to this QR code, it’s a free access to a paper that I published with a former under graduate student in The Psychological Bulletin – so my research using systemic reviews and med [inaudible 44:41] analysis show that every day discrimination sometimes referred to as micro aggressions, are actually robustly linked to a host of physical and mental health outcomes and psychological adjustments.
So yes – racism and discrimination are alive and well in the US and even among Asian American individuals who typically really haven’t been in the conversation about race and racism, for a variety of reasons that my colleagues talked about, including the bamboo ceiling kind of modern minority stereotypes.
For example Anthony Ong and his colleague using daily research methods showed a few years ago, that about 8 in 10 Asian American young adults in college, reported everyday racial discrimination experiences and that rate was basically about one anti-Asian discrimination experience per week.
So my recent research with some of my students and colleagues also showed that in this past year, during this Covid pandemic – when the pandemic first started in the US, we found that with community adults, every one in four Asian American adults reported experiences with racial discrimination, and this rate was actually quite striking for a number of reasons – one because our data was actually collected during the first couple of months of the pandemic when most of the country was actually in lockdown mode and a lot of our participants, about 85% of our participants reported being able to work from home, so when social isolation was happening, people are still experiencing discrimination, just during a one week period, was actually very remarkable.
So discrimination, racism exists and hurts, but having support from people around us can actually help reduce the negative health impact of discrimination.
So my earlier research using a nationally represented sample of Asian American community adults actually showed that – consistent with my research, people who experienced higher levels of discrimination also reported higher levels of psychological distress. Now for those people who have friendly neighbours were actually reporting lower levels of distress. When we looked within the family, Asian American adults who had support of extended family members and supportive spouses were less distressed, particularly within that having greater spousal support actually reduced the negative psychological impact of discrimination.
Now I think we can all agree that the burden of addressing discrimination shouldn’t just fall on the individuals themselves who experience the discrimination, so just like in a personal violence or emergency, medical situations – having active bystanders can actually help a great deal in confronting racism and discrimination, and importantly I think anti racists bystander actions can challenge these existing societal prejudice and confront racism by restoring and reenforcing these social norms that we have been really missing for the past several years.
So when we think of bystanders, we can do a number of things – so bystanders can just stand around – do nothing, and observe discrimination event happening, but bystanders can also speak up against racism or even intervene during the discrimination event. So our recent study actually showed that in response to anti-Asian discrimination during Covid-19, less than 20% of our people of diverse American adults, engaged in what we call prosocial bystander behaviour – so these behaviours included educating themselves and others about anti-Asian discrimination, advocating for Asian American individuals and donating to anti-racist organizations. Among those people who did witness at least one anti-Asian discrimination event, about less than half of our participants stepped in to help the victims, either by calling on authorities, interrupting the hate incident or offering help to the victim afterwards. So we wanted to see, understand – who stepped in to help and potentially to understand why and how we can engage more people to engage in these anti-racist bystander actions.
So we tested a number of factors related to people with bystander interventions and we found that – somewhat surprisingly – ethnic and gender identity of gender backgrounds – they didn’t predict who stepped in to help, and neither did people with self-reported attitudes towards anti-Asian discrimination – what we did find was that – people who experienced more everyday discrimination prior to the pandemic were actually more likely to intervene as a bystander. So potentially they are more empathic, they are more confident, are knowing how to step in to help and advocate for an Asian American victim of discrimination.
So overall in closing I just wanted to say that psychological science has shown that discrimination exists and hurts and having family support, bystanders who are active and white allies can certainly help reduce the negative impact and confront racism and I hope that we can use this knowledge base, expand it and also continue to inform ways to address racism and discrimination, resolve health disparities and then also change social norm. so kind of just – my contact information is here, I really look forward to the panel discussion and the questions from the audience.
Thom: Thank you very much Dr. Lui. Now we do have time for some Q&A so I’d like to first go to Dr. Kraus – if any of the media on the call want to ask a question, please do chat that to me and we’ll get you queued up to ask your question. I have a question to start with for Dr. Kraus – how do you explain the shock factor about incidents of racially motivated violence and some in the public seeming to be surprised or in some level of disbelief about the reality of racism in particular with these recent events affecting Asian Americans, why is it so challenging to communicate and be convincing about the reality of racism to the public and your research showing the perceived progress towards equality being way off from the reality?
Dr. Kraus: Sure, thanks for that – so I guess I would try to explain it as a motivator process, so what I mean by that is – I want desperately to live in a world where I don’t have to worry about my mom going to the grocery store, and that’s a natural kind of inclination that you would have to want to live in that world, so to think that this is not that world is a challenging space to inhabit psychologically and so its very easy for us to apply beliefs that help us avoid those uncomfortable truths and so the shock can happen in the context of thinking about hate crimes in the Asian American communities because we’re not trying to inhabit that world where we feel threatened constantly, where we feel uncomfortable, and that’s true for everybody right. You don’t want to live in a world where other people have violence threatened against them based on their group memberships. Right. That’s not a world that I want to live in, that’s not a world that I want to think about living in and so in the case where you have a choice mentally between thinking of the world in those terms, that’s going to be congenitally taxing, that’s going to cause a lot of stress that Dr. Lui talked about. You might instead fall into these narratives of progress that conceive the world as better, as more just, as more equitable, where those incidents even when they happen and you attend to them – seem like isolated incidents. Seems like there could be other explanations for the violence, there could be something that we don’t know yet, we have to hear the whole story. So that’s kind of the psychological process that can happen and unfold that leads people to think of incidents of racism as being not about a pattern, but about an exception that proves that the narrative is really real.
Thom: Thank you Dr. Kraus – Dr. Lu you talked a lot about bamboo ceiling and the reality that there is something holding back, especially East Asians from leadership roles in corporate America and probably other areas, what do you think can broadly be done to combat this bamboo ceiling?
Dr. Lu: Thank you for that great question. I would say it’s a two-sided story – so first I would emphasize that the onus of breaking the bamboo ceiling shouldn’t fall on the Asians themselves. American organizations need to recognize that Asians aren’t just the model minority with no challenges, they face the bamboo ceiling despite doing so well academically with the lowest unemployment rate, crime rate and so on, and second I think organizations need to recognize that not all Asians are the same. There are important cultural differences – for example among the Asian sub groups – so the bamboo ceiling is really a problem of culture incongruence and there can be different types, different styles of successful leadership. So, I think that’s the story of the organizations – what organizations need to do.
At the same time, I think Asians can potentially benefit from training to become more assertive. To understand their culture, but also understand how one is to be done – for example to emerge as leaders in the United States. So, for example – just like Kamala Harris, Elizabeth Warren, Bill Clinton, Ted Cruz – Andrea the former US presidential candidate, he had extensive debate training and actually represented the United States in debate world championships which I think perhaps helped him become very articulate when he was on stage debating or answering questions and that made him partly look like a leader. So, I think there are different ways to resolve this problem and it’s a two-sided story.
Thom: Thank you Dr. Lu.
Dr. Cheryan, are there concerns among the Asian Americans and broader Asian community and for you that this willingness and desire to adapt to western cultural expectations, shifts the responsibility from the perpetrators of racism on to the victims and what can be done about this to avoid this discussion being in any way misconstrued as victim blaming – I understand that your research is largely about how many of these communities adapt to cope with these things – how can this also have an element of it to put some of the onus on the majority population to let go of what some of those expectations are and broaden their definition of an inclusive American identity.
Dr. Cheryan: Yeah let me be clear and say that – I don’t think Asian Americans role in this is to – their job is to disprove the stereotype, I mean it's kind of a natural reaction that if someone tells you something that you're not, you're going to say that you are that thing, but its not clear that its effective, I mean Asian Americans go around doing this, it’s not clear that its changing everybody’s mind about Asian Americans not being foreign, so really what we need to do is change the image of what it means to be an American in this country, so that when people think American they don’t think white, eats American food, drives pick up trucks, whatever those stereotypes are for Americans we need to broaden that so that people who don’t fit that image of what it means to be an American but are Americans are also included as part of that image and then Asian Americans and other people who are excluded from that – don’t have to go around trying to – with this knowledge of this discrepancy, that they identify a certain way but are not recognized for having that identity.
Thom: Thank you Dr. Cheryan – I want to go to Dr. Lui – this model minority myth – as a clinical psychologist, you can tell us a little bit about how this affects individuals confronted with racism, does it tend to silence them or limit the impetus for activism as a community?
Dr. Lui: Yeah that’s such a great question. The short answer is yes – the model minority myth and stereotype can be – not only putting psychological burden on the individuals to ride through that model minority ideal that other people impose on to pan Asian American individuals, but also it does in some ways silence them or discourage them to practice activism and support other individuals who are victims or discrimination.
So, I just want to preface that there are certainly a lot of individual differences and as my colleagues all mentioned, Asian Americans are not this monolithic group, they also have different immigration histories like Dr. Kraus mentioned, like sort of often times – two things about the model minority myth. One -the model minority myth really started in the civil rights movement when the society was using that stereotype of Asian Americans being quite, submersive, you pit against African Americans who are really demanding equitable treatment for them. So, the idea is that – see look at those Asian Americans, they come here, they are quiet, they do their own thing, put their head down and they're the nail that got hammered down, so why don’t you be like them? So that’s one thing – so, that’s unhealthy in pitting people of color against one another, and two – we also know that the model minority myth can have damaging psychological effects, as well as educational effect. So, for individuals who internalize model minority stereotypes, they might feel like you have to be getting that A+, otherwise you have failed right – so that’s a lot of burden on individuals that have to achieve those kind of levels educationally, career wise and also the negative impact on sort of how we deal with discrimination, some people might actually think – oh, discrimination doesn’t effect Asian Americans, as long as I put my head down and do my thing, then I can succeed, and that is such a misguided view because of the immigration history as well as the bamboo ceiling affecting Asian Americans and I think the last thing about model minority myth is – it also can discourage people from speaking up, not only for themselves, but also for their community and that partly explains why we see people not wanting to report, if there is a discrimination, because they don’t want to be seen as not the model minority. So, the model minority myth can actually explain a lot of what we’re seeing here, sort of the shock – the question that you had for Dr. Kraus, in terms of why people are so surprised, Asian Americans are effected by racism and discrimination and as I mentioned, that’s also partly why Asian Americans have not really been in a conversation of race and racism and we can change that.
Thom: Thank you Dr. Lui, I have a question from the chat, this is from Kim Chee – she’s a graduate student, for Dr. Kraus, how much of the perception versus reality that you’ve studied, how much of that may be due to participants own ideas about racial progress versus social desirability to not conflate race with class, is that something that you can factor for or explore the nuance there?
Dr. Kraus: Right, it's an interesting question. I don’t necessarily know if I've thought about that in a particular way as a conflation. One thing I think about in terms of the intersections between race and class is that – oftentimes you could try to parse them and look at them as distinct constructs, but I think in a real true understanding of race and racism in the United States, involves a combination of those two constructs, the history of the United States, and the economy of the United States is based in racial capitalism, and so as someone who came from studying economic inequality first, I've really thought about studying the racial dynamics of inequality as really having a better understanding from my own perspective and my own research of the work that I'm doing. So even if they're on top of each other and one is driving the other, I think it is that complexity where a lot of the insights lie and how we understand racism and what it does in terms of peoples economic outcomes. Just some thoughts about what came to mind as a result of that question. Thank you.
Thom: For Dr. Lu – how do you explain immigration patterns that may favor more affluent immigrants from South Asian countries to America and can you factor for that in the analysis of the bamboo ceiling and the discrepancy of South Asian versus East Asian leadership.
Dr. Lu: That’s a great question. So, the short answer is – across all of our studies we account for socio economic status, either by for example asking about their education, their personal income, their family income, their parents income and so on and we still consistently see the bamboo ceilings, even after accounting for the socio-economic status.
Thom: For Dr. Cheryan, another question from the chat, you mentioned that those people who are seen as foreigners, push back by asserting their identity to prove their Americanness and belonging, but the beauty of America as you mentioned is the eclectic and broad cultural identities that are part of being American. Does the idea that Asian Americans being perceived as foreign should try to fit in and claim Americanness send a wrong message? Shouldn’t the onus be on the dominant group to learn and understand these amorphous boundaries of what it means to be an American and I apologize if this is very similar to the previous question –
Dr. Cheryan: Yeah I totally agree, so this – I think is related to the first question on who should be doing the action to make the change and it’s definitely not Asian Americans, this is a societal level problem and so we need to make societal level changes to the stereotype and some ways to do that could be change in representation of Asian Americans in the media, so they’re not portrayed as being foreigners but are shown as Americans. I think Dr. Lu’s research also speaks to that, if we don’t have Asians in positions of power then people are not getting exposed to Asian American leaders who can help change that image. I think the way we talk about Asian Americans in the media makes a big difference. There is kind of a well-known error that was made when Michelle Kuan was figure skating, there was headline that read American beats Kuan when I think Tara Lipinski beat her, but Kwan is an American – so anyways its errors like that that end up perpetuating this stereotype and that’s the place where we need to make a change.
I also wanted to weigh in a little bit on the question about why has there not been more outcry about this discrimination against Asian Americans and I think the foreigners thing has something to do with that, I think this unique forms of discrimination that Asian Americans face, they're unique because Asian Americans face them compared to other groups, but they're also unique because they don’t fit the image of what we think of when we think of discrimination – and so I think what we have shown in some recent data that I showed today – this idea that you can be discriminated against because you're foreign, its not seen as as bad as discrimination based on other things. So if you take for example – you tell someone that so and so didn’t get a job because they were assumed to be foreign, versus so and so didn’t get a job because they were assumed to be uneducated, Americans will say that that discrimination is worse when the assumption is based on being uneducated than when the assumption was made based on being foreign, and part of the reason for that is because people think it’s more okay to discriminate based on foreignness than it is to discriminate based on lower status and so I think this is part of the reasons there hasn’t been a lot of outcry, the foreigners based discrimination is not seen as as serious form of discrimination as other forms of discrimination – I think that’s another thing that we need to really change and show that being assumed to be foreign can result in these really horrendous acts of discrimination in the same way that other sources of discrimination can and its illegal, like you cant discriminate based on race, on national origin, its very illegal in this country to do that and its equally illegal to discriminate based on anything else and so I think those kind of messages need to get out as well, so that we can start to recognize that the forms of discrimination the Asian Americans face are also really bad and need to stop and we need to have an outcry about them and all those kind of things.
Thom: Thank you Dr. Cheryan – I want to give all the panelists an opportunity to respond to this question here from the chat, from each of your different perspective, this may be interesting -starting with Dr. Lui – what do you feel we don’t know about racism and discrimination, where do we have gaps in understanding these issues?
Dr. Lui: I think there are a lot of gaps, as a researcher in some ways that’s our job security I guess. I think one thing is – how do we understand individual differences and how they respond and how they react to discrimination. There is a lot of remaining room to keep that apart. And also, from kind of the perpetrators perspective, we also have a lot of room to understand how do people respond to active discrimination for different populations, different communities and who rises above to help and advocate. Either white allies or bystanders. So, I think – Dr. Cheryan was just talking about how Asian American individuals might have these unique experiences with discrimination, the theme is a little different than for native American individuals or African American individuals. Our research on every day discrimination, racism and micro aggressions show that yes – they might have different themes, but nevertheless they are the same construct. They are the same unifying idea and they are equally – whether its every day discrimination or micro aggressions, they are equally detrimental to mental health, physical health as well as peoples attitude of trust in the system and advancement in their career. So, I don’t think we need to – we can make light of these subtle discriminations of foreigners' phobia attitude towards Asian Americans. I think other things that we need to also note is – we don’t talk about systemic or structural racism or discrimination. We tend to think of racism or discrimination being an act of individuals, whether it’s intended or unintentional sort of ignorance. The system also needs to change, so the allocation of resources, recognizing and documenting hate incidents and promoting a just idea, society is also really important. So how do we unpack the impact of systemic racism in terms of differential levels of policing, whether or not your neighborhood has – as a food dessert - [inaudible 01:11:03] versus having a lot of pollution. Those are the infrastructure and surface level kind of systemic discrimination. What is the impact and how that might intersect with individual level exposure to racism and discrimination? I think we have a lot of room to unpack all of those and to understand how it relates to peoples health and how people might use different resources individually, socially and kind of virally to confront discrimination.
Thom: Thank you Dr. Lui – Dr. Kraus would you have anything you would like to add about that – gaps in our understanding of these issues?
Dr. Kraus: Sure, just briefly. I think there's a distinction between what’s known and then what’s known in the literature or science and so just thinking about reflexivity again, to the extent that science is open to more people that have access to really deep socialized knowledge within minoritized populations that are historically left out, there's a lot of knowledge there's a lot of things that are known about racism and racisms facts that is not yet in touch with what science knows about these topics. So, there's a lot of opportunity there for really getting a deeper knowledge and access to some truths that are already within people's lived experiences.
Thom: Thank you Dr. Kraus. Dr. Lu – what would you say are some gaps that you’d be interested in exploring that would help us understand these issues better?
Dr. Lu: Yeah I've been thinking about your important question – one thing I would say which I recognize is a little sensitive, is that I think there tends to be a limited amount of research on how the different racial minority groups, for example sometimes inflict such injustice and how they interact. Because I think it's very important for them to become allies, for all groups to bond together, but sometimes I think we have a limited understanding of how these inter racial minority group dynamics may happen and I think that’s something researchers need to look at.
Thom: Thank you Dr. Lu. Dr. Cheryan would you add anything to this question about gaps that need further exploration?
Dr. Cheryan: Yeah I agree with all my colleagues, I think those are all super important ideas. I guess there's two that came up for me and I think some people talked about this in the presentations but really looking at ethnic groups variability I think is really, really important within – not only within Asian Americans but within all the racial and ethnic groups and the second one is intersectionality – so thinking about how all of these effects are represented today and that are out there in the literature, really intersect with other identities, for example gender, social class, sexual orientation – there's so many different ways to think about intersectionality, but I think that’s a super important place to go in the future, to not homogenize over ethnicity and also not over these other important identities.
Dr. Lui: If I could add – my colleagues all had really brilliant ideas. One thing that I think I wanted to put my clinical scientist hat on is – some of our tools currently in terms of clinical interventions can help, but they tend to focus on what the individuals can do. So in a consulting room if someone comes in to seek therapy, we may or may not address the complexity of determination structurally and also interpersonally how that affects people's psycho pathology or their mental health and we do have some tools, but certainly what is also important is – how do we make existing – these great interventions culturally responsive to the needs to these communities of color who have been underserved and they are not really understood a whole lot, kind of like what Dr Kraus was talking about – like we know in science, but that information may not be in the general public, within the clinicians hands, that usually takes 10 years to get basic science into the service industry and then also again speaking to the structural and systemic issue, its who are the researchers – who are the clinicians serving these communities. We certainly have a lot of gaps to fill there, not only knowledge wise but also promote the workforce and funding agencies need to give resources to do more research to help these underserved communities. I don’t think that’s really talked about enough.
Thom: Thank you Dr. Lui, we are out of time so I’d like to bring us to a conclusion. Thank you so much to all of our panelists, we will be sharing a video recording and transcript of today's session and you will have access to the contact info so that you can follow up with any of these panelists for additional questions. So, keep an eye out for that information, if you’ve registered for today’s program you're automatically on the list to get that information. If you followed some link without registering and you’d like to get that info, please email us at [email protected] and we’ll be sure to get you on the list to provide you with that information.
In closing I’d like to thank Mr. Charlie Blue from the APS for partnering with us to bring this together, it's such an important issue, we’ve had a tumultuous year in terms of bringing racial inequality to the fore and I would just like to say that neutrality is not an option. We all need to be anti-racists. It’s no longer acceptable to just be neutral and to not perform an act of discrimination yourself. We need to be anti-racists – so I hope everyone can take something from what all the panelists said today that may help you to find ways to do that in your own life.
With that I’d like to thank Dr. Kraus, Dr. Lui, Dr. Lu and Dr. Cheryan – thank you very much for joining us and thank you everyone who attended. With that I will say goodbye, stay safe, stay healthy and good luck.