The Ray C. Anderson Center for Sustainable Business (“Center”) invites you to the next talk in the Business, Environment, and Society Speaker Series. Center-affiliated faculty member Tiffany Johnson will present “Work, Racial Equity, and Wellness.” The event is open to the public.
In order to have a more equitable workplace, we need to think about how to foster wellbeing in the workplace. How can people be sustained? Also, what does it mean when the history of work culture in the U.S. means that work and wellness are at a deeper disparity for people of color and women? Johnson’s talk will offer insights from a historical perspective: How did we get to this point—and what can we do from here to enact positive change?
Johnson’s presentation is inspired by a research project she began in 2018 and teaching initiative she subsequently pursued as a 2020-21 Georgia Tech Diversity and Inclusion Fellow. Her study on the history of work and wellness for Black women in the U.S. is rooted in her own ancestral data and archival analysis. Part of the data analysis included Johnson’s travels to her ancestors’ freedmen’s settlement in Mississippi to speak with elders in the family. Through family stories and archives, she became more curious about how Black workers used their own agency as they approached work and well-being in oppressive working conditions in the 1800s and 1900s. Themes at the center of her work are: the value of Black bodies, wellness in the context of work, and the agency of Black women who innovated to maintain health while living in an oppressive system.
Questions that will be addressed include:
How do workplace norms inflict harm on Black workers?
How can the lives of Black workers be valued in the workplace?
How can workplaces be more sustainable from a wellness perspective?
What is the connection between diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) and wellness?
While the focus of Johnson’s talk will be on equity at the intersection of race and gender, the insights are transferable to all types of equity. The presentation will be particularly of interest to sustainability directors, HR professionals, managers, and individuals involved in wellness and/or DEI initiatives in the workplace.
Johnson will present her talk, engage in a Q&A with Center Faculty Director Beril Toktay, and take questions from the audience.
Tiffany Johnson is assistant professor of organizational behavior at the Scheller College of Business at Georgia Tech. Johnson’s research focuses on the micro-foundations of inequity. She is particularly interested in how individuals within organizations not only create but also dismantle experiences related to stigma and marginalization. She examines her interests in the context of race, gender, social class, and other differences that are increasingly important to consider in today’s workplaces and organizations. Her dissertation was selected as a finalist for the INFORMS Best Dissertation Competition in 2015, and her research appears in journals such as Journal of Applied Psychology, Organizational Behavior and Human Decision Processes (OBHDP), and Organizational Psychology Review.
Due to current distance-learning circumstances, this event will be hosted virtually. The virtual platform will be BlueJeans. Please see below for instructions to download this software and join the meeting.
The Ray C. Anderson Center for Sustainable Business was founded in 2013 to act as a catalyst and connector, bringing together students, research faculty, companies, and entrepreneurs to create an environment where business-driven solutions to sustainability challenges can take shape and thrive. In all, Scheller provides students unparalleled breadth in environmental sustainability, ethics, corporate social responsibility, social entrepreneurship, and values-based leadership.