Metropolitan Universities journal is pleased to announce an upcoming issue, “Anti-Racism, Equity, and Inclusion at Urban Institutions.” Over the past six years, higher education’s collective challenge to adequately and effectively address continuing issues of inequity and lack of inclusion have been the impetus for vocal student criticism and widespread protest. The deaths of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor and Ahmaud Arbrey have ignited national and global calls to address long-standing issues of racism and injustice within the United States. This focus is all the more urgent in light of the notable demographic trends reflecting the browning of America, including the increased enrollment of students of color within institutions of higher education, the lagging presence of leaders of color within the academy, and cohort changes among faculty often reflecting the stratification of increases in the browning and feminization of more junior/earlier career and term/adjunct faculty. For urban institutions with missions calling for their collaboration and relevance to their proximal urban communities, communities which have proportionately higher representation of members of minoritized communities, the pull to address issues of equity, inclusion and anti-racism is especially important.

The current issue seeks manuscripts that contribute to and expand our understanding and knowledge base informing empirically-informed and evidence-based programming, interventions, and policies strengthening inclusion, equity and anti-racist practices at urban institutions. The special issue is supported by a collaborative team of Co-Guest Editors, which includes:

  • Kevin W. Allison, PhD, professor of psychology, Virginia Commonwealth University
  • Sylvia Carey-Butler, PhD, chief diversity officer, Kennesaw State University
  • Rosalyn Hobson Hargraves, associate professor of electrical and computer engineering and teaching and learning, VCU
  • Tiffany G. Townsend, PhD, chief diversity officer, associate professor of psychological sciences, Augusta University
  • Jeffery Wilson, associate professor, higher education, VCU

This call is for manuscripts that provide critical, evidence-based studies and the issue seeks to identify the influences, practices, frameworks, challenges, and strategies that inform effective anti-racist and equity practice. Authors should examine efforts that have been in place long enough to show both positive and/or negative results as measured through data collection, research and/or evaluation processes. To allow readers to apply ideas and strategies in other settings, authors should provide a clear description of the challenges and lessons learned. Papers that offer descriptions of initiatives without research or evaluation elements will not be accepted.

Metropolitan Universities journal (MUJ) seeks to elevate work that demonstrates how urban-identified colleges and universities enact their mission aligned with commitments and investments in equity and anti-racism.

We welcome evidence-based manuscripts that examine:

  • Definitions, operationalization, and measurement of indicators of success in addressing relevant dimensions of equity, inclusion and anti-racism at the individual, classroom or institutional level
  • Efforts addressing and measuring the impact of representation among the student body, among faculty as well as in university administration and leadership for urban institutions (e.g., how does representation impact critical outcomes such as student success? Campus climate? Enrollment growth or other key institutional goals?)
  • How are institutions addressing or anticipating the demographic changes in the broader American context on their current and future student bodies, faculty and leadership and addressing related issues of resource allocation, and equity in rewards and recognition (e.g., pay equity)
  • Pedagogical, curricular and co-curricular practices designed to advance equity in urban institutions, and the impact of those practices on student learning and other outcomes. Work might include examinations of relevant student service programming, such as mental health and well-being services for minoritized students, within urban institutions
  • The effectiveness of education, training and professional development initiatives and programs for students, faculty, staff and university leadership at urban and community engaged institutions
  • Efforts and initiatives addressing the racial culture and climate at urban institutions
  • Practices that support equitable relationships and mutually beneficial collaborations with the community
  • The impact of financial investments in anti-racism, equity and inclusion work
  • Barriers to effective programming and practices addressing racism
  • Community engagement that addresses systemic racism and inequality in the communities where urban institutions are located
  • Submissions might also address efforts focusing on the disproportionate impact of COVID-19 on communities of color within urban institutions, including the opportunities and challenges offered by our expanded use of technology and access to these tools

Manuscript Submission Guidelines

We invite submissions of manuscripts by May 10, 2021. Submissions should be prepared in accordance with the Information for Authors and should be no more than 7,000 words (exclusive of tables, references, etc). Preference is given to those manuscripts that demonstrate innovation and impact and include perspectives across multiple institutions. Shorter submissions for this issue will be considered.

This issue is scheduled for publication in November 2021.

Please direct all questions regarding this issue to