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Multiple images of researchers working in the field. The first image shows two student researchers, looking at a laptop by a stream in their high boots and weighters. The second image is a close up shot of a student researcher looking at creatures in glass containers. The third image shows two professors, wearing safety glasses, about to pour liquid nitrogen. The fourth image shows a researcher in the lab. The fifth image shows a group of researchers looking at foliage in plastic bags. The sixth image shows two researchers taking images for the library archive, one is standing on a stool while the other holds books open.

Commitment to Diverse, Equitable, and Inclusive Research

The Office of the Vice Chancellor (OVCR) for Research is dedicated to building and supporting a diverse, inclusive, and welcoming research culture at the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill. We seek to ensure that our scientific research enterprise serves all individuals across diverse backgrounds, life experiences, and political viewpoints. The OVCR supports UNC-Chapel Hill’s diversity and inclusion mission statement, “to build understanding across differences, create conditions to ensure the equitable educational and social benefits of diversity, and cultivate a welcoming and supportive environment…”

And in alignment with Carolina’s community standards, we’re making our research, programs, resources, and training opportunities equitable, inclusive, and accessible throughout UNC-Chapel Hill, the communities we serve, and the broader research community.


In collaboration with the Office for Diversity and Inclusion and the OVCR, the Odum Institute has created a certificate program to foster a new standard of inclusion, sensitivity, and intentionality in the UNC research community.

This semester, the Odum Institute will run a pilot of The Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion in Research (DEIR) Certificate Program, developed specifically for faculty and staff engaged in research activities.

The Carolina Postdoctoral Program for Faculty Diversity (CPPFD) fellowship is one of the oldest diversity fellowship programs in the nation and receives strong support and recognition at UNC-Chapel Hill and peer institutions. The program is part of the Office of Postdoctoral Affairs with support from university administrators, departments, centers and institutes. Recruiting of fellows is carried out on a national basis, historically attracting scholars predominantly from the humanities, but with growing exposure to all fields. More than 186 scholars have participated in the program since its inception in 1983.

The Frank Porter Graham Institute

sponsors the award-winning Race, Culture, and Ethnicity Committee to elevate awareness, promote dialogue, and facilitate a positive work climate, while fostering the development of culturally attuned and culturally relevant work. Members of the committee have joined other FPG strategic groups to strengthen collaborations, and the committee has held recent workshops on the impact of implicit bias on decision-making, recognizing the need for cultural competence, anti-harassment bystander training, and more.

The Center for Health Promotion and Disease Prevention (HPDP)

oversees the Food, Fitness, and Opportunity Research Collaborative and HPDP Book Club.

Food, Fitness, and Opportunity Research Collaborative

picture of the HPDP book club

Under the leadership of Dr. Molly DeMarco, the Food, Fitness, and Opportunity Research Collaborative (FFORC) at the Center for Health Promotion and Disease Prevention requires all team members — students and staff — to complete Racial Equity Institute Racial Equity Workshops Phase I and II, paid for by grant funds, and has employed teams of racial equity coaches for three years to help develop internal and external racial equity goals.

This is a particular priority for FFORC, because it conducts food-related health disparities research with low-resource communities of color. Two staff members started as community partners; one leads the team on field trips to learn more about the lived experiences and history of partner communities, including visits to Stagville Plantation, Princeville, NC (founded by former enslaved persons), and the Greensboro Civil Rights Museum.

FFORC also plans and facilitates the monthly Courageous Conversations, open to all staff, at HPDP. Topics have included tokenism, implicit bias, and white supremacist culture. The FFORC Racial Equity Workgroup was recently created to help move all of these activities forward.

HPDP Book Club

When UNC’s Summer Reading Program announced Just Mercy as the read for the 2015 incoming freshmen, HPDP decided to support that effort by encouraging staff to participate. The Center purchased enough copies to support a small lending library and sponsored a discussion of the material.

What started as a one-time event has evolved into an ongoing habit of engaging staff in topics that complement Courageous Conversations. Both activities support the University’s commitment to create a work environment that values inclusion and celebrates diversity. Thus far, the reading list has included:

  • Just Mercy by Bryan Stevenson
  • Black Man in A White Coat by Damon Tweedy
  • Being Mortal by Atul Gawande
  • Underground Airlines by Ben Winters
  • How Does It Feel to Be A Problem?: Being Young and Arab in America by Moustafa Bayoumi
  • Hillbilly Elegy by J. D. Vance
  • The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas
  • The Line Becomes a River by Francisco Cantú

In partnership with the College of Arts & Sciences, the Center for Faculty Excellence, and the Office of Postdoctoral Affairs, UNC Research is proud to co-sponsor the following institutional membership for students, postdocs, faculty and staff. You must use your UNC email address to sign-up for your free membership.

To claim your NCFDD Membership:

  1. Access the National Center for Faculty Development and Diversity.
  2. Click the Become a Member box.
  3. Under the Select your institution prompt, select University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
  4. Click Continue
  5. On the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill page, click on Activate My Membership
  6. Complete the registration form and follow the instructions.