Core Values

Ragon Institute Commitment to Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion

The Ragon Institute of MGH, MIT and Harvard is deeply committed to fostering an inclusive, equitable community that values all aspects of diversity, including but not limited to: race, ethnicity, gender identity, sexual orientation, religion, age, socioeconomic status, immigration status, and disability.

We, as an Institute and research community, are dedicated to advancing social justice and creating an environment that celebrates individual differences. We acknowledge that differences in perspectives are invaluable in driving innovation and discovery in science and medicine. Our research mission involves a focus on diseases like HIV, tuberculosis, and COVID-19, which have disproportionately affected marginalized communities, including communities of color, within the USA and around the world.

We recognize that the fields and society in which we operate have a long history of excluding people of color, women, and minorities, as well as systemically dismissing or inadequately recognizing their contributions and accomplishments. We acknowledge that the results of this history are systemic racism, sexism, and other institutionalized forms of exclusion that have pervasive ramifications today. We denounce these patterns and are committed to diversity not simply because we recognize the inherent value of all people, but because we understand that our mission is strengthened by creating and maintaining a diverse workforce with representation from traditionally underrepresented groups who bring new insights and ideas to bear.

In this regard, the Ragon Institute is actively working to implement change that brings about a more just and equitable scientific and academic community.

In order to advance diversity, equity and inclusion, we are committed to:

  • Creating and sustaining a workplace that reflects, values, and embraces all aspects of diversity
  • Researching the immunology of diseases that disproportionately affects disadvantaged and marginalized communities
  • Recruiting and retaining talented members of underrepresented communities throughout the Institute workforce
  • Providing formal training and workplace policies to recognize and address implicit and explicit bias in the workplace
  • Organizing and funding programs for disadvantaged and underrepresented youth to conduct scientific research at the Institute
  • Providing mentorship for career development and supporting leadership roles for persons from disadvantaged and underrepresented groups
  • Actively pursuing community engagement and partnerships with local, national, and global communities to advance justice and equity
  • Creating an ongoing Race and Equity Working Group, reporting progress to the faculty, staff, and Institute Board
  • Tracking and reporting organizational diversity and other key metrics
  • Consistently reevaluating Institute policies and monitoring and reporting progress towards achieving these goals

This list will be regularly re-evaluated to measure progress and refine goals as the Ragon Institute’s commitments to equity, diversity, inclusion, and social justice move forward.

Director Bruce Walker was inspired by the Ragon’s DEI statement, which was originally drafted by Ragon workforce members Aaron Abai and Fatima Hussain, before being workshopped by our Ragon Equality, Diversity, and Inclusion Taskforce and endorsed by leadership.

To honor the DEI initiatives, and to welcome our workforce back onsite, Dr. Walker filmed members of our workforce reading the statement and created this short film, which we are pleased to be sharing now.