Diversity and inclusion are two words that have become increasingly important in our society, but their origins can be traced back to the earliest languages. The word "diversity" comes from the Latin word "diversitas," which means "difference." Inclusion, on the other hand, comes from the Latin word "inclusio," which means "shut in or enclosure."
The modern diversity and inclusion movement can be traced back to the civil rights movements of the 1960s, when marginalized groups such as African Americans, women, and the LGBTQ+ community began to demand equal rights and representation in society. However, the roots of the movement go back even further, to the suffrage movement of the late 19th and early 20th centuries, which fought for women's right to vote.
Today, diversity and inclusion have become key issues in many organizations, as they strive to create a more equitable and inclusive workplace. Research has shown that diversity and inclusion are not only moral imperatives, but also critical to the success of organizations. Diverse teams are more innovative and productive, and companies with more diverse leadership have been shown to outperform their peers.
One of the key pieces of research that has influenced global leaders is the McKinsey & Company report, "Diversity Matters." This report, published in 2015, found that companies in the top quartile for gender and racial diversity are more likely to have financial returns above their national industry medians. This report has helped to make the business case for diversity and inclusion, and has encouraged companies and organizations to take concrete steps to improve diversity and inclusion.
Other key figures in the field of diversity and inclusion research include professors such as Robin Ely at Harvard Business School, who has studied the experiences of women and minorities in the workplace, and Scott Page at the University of Michigan, who has written extensively on the benefits of diversity in problem-solving.
In order to further explore the topic of diversity and inclusion, I would recommend reading books such as "The Diversity Bonus" by Scott Page, "Diversity in Organizations" by Myrtle P. Bell, and "Blindspot: Hidden Biases of Good People" by Mahzarin Banaji and Anthony Greenwald. There are also many research articles available on the topic, including the McKinsey report mentioned earlier, and the Harvard Business Review article "Why Diversity Programs Fail" by Frank Dobbin and Alexandra Kalev.
In conclusion, diversity and inclusion are two important concepts that have become increasingly important in our society, and in the workplace in particular. While the movement has its roots in the civil rights and suffrage movements, research has shown that diversity and inclusion are critical to the success of organizations today. By taking concrete steps to improve diversity and inclusion, companies and organizations can create a more equitable and inclusive workplace, and reap the benefits of a more diverse and innovative workforce.