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Power & Inequality Research Initiative


The concept of inequality describes more than the feeling of exclusion or disparity. Its full capacity lies in its ability to operate as a strategic framework, efficiently curating systemic, structural, visible and invisible barriers. Because of this, inequality is woven into all aspects of society, including economy, family, education, policy, housing, and other social structures.

Our understanding of inequality is framed within the presence of power and its complex organization. The inequality system works by suggesting that the current conditions of society are naturally reproduced. In this view, inequality is reduced to an experience independent of the external forces that enact it. Power is neither simply a possession nor relational. It is a structural quality of life, continuously reproduced in practices, values, traditions, and relations.

RESI’s Power & Inequality Research Initiative

The Power & Inequality Research Initiative has been formed in recognition of the persistent and harmful effects of inequality throughout society. The research projects established within this initiative seek to identify, understand, and interrogate barriers to more equitable social relations and structures. As of the start of the 2023-2024 academic year, those projects include the following:

The Anti-DEI Legislation Impact Study at Hispanic-Serving Institutions (ADLIS-HSI)

ADLIS-HSI is a project that seeks to measure the impact of recent legislative efforts across the country (including, but not limited to, Texas and Florida) to defund DEI programs, practices, and infrastructure in public four-year (particularly research-intensive) HSIs. ADLIS-HSI asks, how do these contemporary legislative efforts aimed at public higher education institutions affect faculty perceptions of their job security, their job satisfaction, and their decision-making processes about their employment? And for faculty who decide to leave their institutions, ADLIS-HSI asks what are the actual or potential economic impacts of those decisions? The ADLIS-HSI study is under preparation for submission to the IRB and external funders, and we hope to begin data collection as soon as possible.

More supported project announcements coming soon….