After spending 25 years promoting conflict resolution and social change around the world, Beyond Conflict is launching a new initiative in Boston focused on transforming attitudes contributing to racism and discrimination. Our approach is guided by our experience working to address social division and exclusion in societies around the world, as well as new research from brain and behavioral science that will help us understand and target the underlying drivers of how we think and behave. The Mayor of Boston and other organizations in Boston are leading significant work to address systemic and chronic racism in Boston, but this effort requires support from other groups as well.
Beyond Conflict has launched the Boston Equality Initiative, a multi-year program that will convene new and emerging leaders to develop an action plan to measurably reduce racial exclusion in Boston. There is currently no convening mechanism for people divided from each other to develop a shared understanding of racism, forge a common framework, and create new pilot programs that measurably reduce racism or racial exclusion.
The Boston Equality Initiative will identify emerging and existing leaders throughout the city to build a committed network who will begin the generational work to address racism over a multi-year pilot program and initiate a set of collaborative city-wide pilot projects. During this period, we will create the first-ever baseline measures of the psychological factors that drive racism, and other mindset indicators, so we can track progress over time. This initiative is designed to serve as a catalyst for creating a more equitable and inclusive city, as well as be a scalable program to deploy in other cities.