Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion

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Our DEI Initiative 

Our work on diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) focuses on making changes both internally and externally, with shared stewardship from across the organization. In mid-2022, CGD developed its second DEI Strategy, which aimed to build on the successes of the first, address some of the gaps, and add new objectives where relevant. This strategy has three themes: (1) external engagement; (2) data; and (3) learning and development. For example, one of our aims is to entice a more diverse set of candidates to apply to CGD. To achieve this, we are doing virtual student visits; advertising roles more widely; and partnering with less-represented universities. Other activities include developing skill-based tools to make our recruitment process less biased; implementing a new mentoring program; and improving our digital accessibility (such as providing captions and transcripts for events, and ensuring our site works well for those who are visually impaired). Finally, we are aiming to do more to communicate our DEI objectives and progress publicly, to hold ourselves accountable and understand what more we could do. To find out more about diversity within CGD, please see here.

Below, you can find CGD commentary and analysis on DEI in global development - at CGD, the IFIs, and beyond. We invite you to explore!

 A Message from CGD's President  

CGD’s mission of reducing global poverty and inequity is carried out through new ideas and actionable policy proposals to improve lives around the world. The spirit of CGD’s mission requires us to apply the same critical lens to our own institution, evaluating our shared norms and policies to ensure we are building a more inclusive organization. We do this because it is part of our core values, but we also believe it strengthens our research and relevance to have a more diverse set of lived experiences contributing to our important work.  

In 2018, CGD set out an agenda of activities around DEI after an assessment of our organizational culture and practices. These included a gender and race pay gap analysis, a “no manels” pledge for public events, re-designed staff training around inclusive leadership/implicit bias/bystander training, launching a peer support program, adding an institutional ombudsperson, and introducing a new Summer Delegates mentorship/internship program aimed at expanding our networks to new, more diverse groups.  

After the killing of George Floyd and the momentum behind Black Lives Matter and other social justice movements, CGD renewed our commitment to building a more inclusive and just institution by re-examining policies, practices, and norms around DEI both internally and externally, including looking for ways we can remove barriers to full access, participation, and equity in everything we do. This led to the creation of a staff DEI Committee, with a direct liaison to the executive team. The committee presented the first strategy in late 2020. It had four workstreams--recruiting and onboarding; levelling the playing field; learning and development; and organizational culture--led by different members of staff. By mid-2022, many of the near-term objectives under these workstreams had been achieved, leading the committee to present the second strategy. This strategy has three workstreams--external engagement; data; and learning and development--aiming to influence DEI both internally and externally.  

While we are proud of CGD’s work so far, we recognize it is not nearly enough and there is still so much more to be done. We will share more about our progress as the work evolves, and we hope you will take a moment to read about our plans, experiences, and reflections along the way.  

- Masood Ahmed