Educational Services and Leadership
College of Education
Kerrigan, Monica Reid
Johnson, Ane Turner
diversity and inclusion, engineering education, institutional messaging, neoinstitutionalism, organizational culture, sense making
Diversity in the workplace; Engineering
Lack of diversity in engineering programs has drawn recent national attention (National Science Foundation, 2017). Scholars have suggested the normative engineering culture perpetuates the marginalization of students and faculty with excluded identities (Leydens & Lucena, 2017; Seymour & Hewitt, 1997; Walden, Trytten, Shehab, & Foor, 2018). This multiple case study examined three engineering units committed to creating an inclusive engineering culture that values social justice in order to redefine the "ideal" engineer. The overarching research question was: How do engineering diversity champions produce and circulate institutional messages about diversity and inclusion? Drawing from communications studies, cultural studies, and organizational theory, I systematically analyzed data from 11 interviews and 209 pages of documents to better understand if gaps existed between engineering diversity champions' espoused beliefs and the institutional messages they circulated, and whether university resources shaped those messages. Findings indicate that engineering diversity champions make sense of diversity and inclusion in ways that reflect their internal commitments to social justice, but institutional resources shaped what messages were actually circulated. The theory of neoinstitutionalism is offered as a lens for understanding the isomorphic and divergent organizational behaviors evident among the cases.
Lezotte, Stephanie, "You say you want a revolution: A multiple case study of diversity and inclusion messages to transform engineering culture" (2020). Theses and Dissertations. 2773.
Available for download on Thursday, April 14, 2022