How we create impactful research and the ways in which we educate the next generation of leaders distinctively shapes the future of business. To that end, Leeds’ world-class faculty are undertaking important research on diversity, equity, inclusion (DEI), and the implications of these issues for business and society. Furthermore, Leeds recognizes that all students need to see themselves reflected in course content. In addition to courses focused on diversity in business, our faculty are working to enhance inclusion in curricula across divisions.


Leeds faculty are undertaking important research on business and its relationship to issues of diversity, equity and inclusion. Following are examples of DEI research topics helping to generate knowledge and insights that impact the world of practice and scholarship globally as we work to be a world recognized thought leader in this area.


In order to properly serve and prepare our students to be the future leaders in the global business landscape, we have to create a learning environment that allows them to bring their whole selves into our classrooms. Toward this end Leeds has stood up the Classroom Inclusion Team (CIT), a group of committed faculty from each division whose charge it is to research, introduce, measure, and celebrate inclusive classroom practices.


Service to the community is essential for Leeds faculty. Our faculty partners with the Office of Diversity Affairs and the Diverse Scholars Research Initiative to perform research on a variety of topics with diverse students. Service also includes outreach beyond Leeds, such as accounting Instructor Susan Morley’s work with the VITA Tax program which helps all residents in the Boulder community facing economic challenges.


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The Impact of Poverty

David Drake and Gloria Urrea’s paper (with K. Balasubramanian) titled “The Impact of Poverty on Base of the Pyramid Operations: Evidence from Mobile Money in Africa” is accepted by Journal of Operations Management.


The Role of Race in Salary Negotiations

Research by Leeds’ Assistant Professor Sabrina D. Volpone and "Linkages between racioethnicity, appraisal reactions, and employee engagement."


Inequalities in Disaster Relief

Stephen Billings also co-authored a study, along with Associate Professor Emily Gallagher and Lowell Ricketts of the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis, that found massive inequalities in disaster relief between wealthy and lower-income residents. 


Unconscious Biases

Stefanie K. Johnson, David Hekman and Elsa Chan collaborated on a series of three studies aimed at uncovering what unconscious biases impacted diverse candidates’ chances of being hired for a variety of jobs.

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The School to Prison Pipeline

Leeds Associate Professor Stephen Billings co-authored research that finds that minority and male students attending stricter middle schools are more likely to end up incarcerated later in life.

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School Diversity

In addition, a new paper also co-authored by Billings and featured in the Washington Post, indicates that a school’s racial composition could shape your future political identity through friendships, role models, instruction, discipline, and extracurricular activities.


Executive Pay Leads to Racial and Gender Bias

David Hekman, along with Leeds researchers: Associate Professor Stefanie K. Johnson, Professor Russell Cropanzano, PhD alumna Elsa Chan and PhD candidate Jessica Kirk, examined the ways executive pay leads to racial and gender bias

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Inclusion in the Workplace

Stefanie K. Johnson’s new book, Inclusify: How to Maximize Uniqueness and Belonging to Build More Innovative Teams, focuses on helping leaders create diverse teams feel engaged, empowered, accepted and valued.

Classroom Inclusion Team (CIT)

Sanjai Bhagat
Christina Lacerenza
Christina Lacerenza
Assistant Professor
Organizational Leadership and Information Analytics
Elmer Ramos
Elmer Ramos
Teaching Assistant Professor
Sarah Cowan
Sarah Rosenbaum Cowan
Assistant Teaching Professor
Social Responsibility and Sustainability
Salma Shukri
Salma T. Shukri
Teaching Assistant Professor
Professional Effectiveness
Clare Wang
Clare Wang
Plante Moran / EKS&H Faculty Fellow • Professor • Accounting PhD Program Director • Center for Ethics and Social Responsibility Research Director • DCPC Chair
Accounting • Center for Ethics and Social Responsibility
Huanan Zhang
Huanan Zhang
Assistant Professor
Strategy, Entrepreneurship and Operations