Diversity, Equity, Inclusion

Community Description

A diverse healthcare workforce not only improves patient care outcomes, it also allows organizations to be more productive, creative, and innovative. Still, not being part of the dominant culture adversely impacts researchers’ promotion rates, grant funding attainment, mentorship opportunities, and representation leadership positions. In addition, troubling health disparities result from socioeconomic inequity, bias, and structural racism.

HRA created the Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) Community to provide a collaborative space for members to (1) identify barriers to biomedical researchers’ full participation in discovery that can be addressed by member organizations and ways to advance research that improves the health of all communities, and (2) combat bias in health care that have resulted in the health disparities that exist today.

The goals of the HRA DEI Community are to provide learning opportunities, develop resources, and identify tools to amplify member’s individual efforts to measurably advance diversity, equity, and inclusion in their grant programs and processes. The group is committed to helping HRA members learn, share, and implement successful strategies to eliminate racism, discrimination, and bias not only in research but across the broad health care ecosystem.

Initially, the DEI Community identified the 3 areas of focus below and formed subgroups to explore the topics in depth. The subgroups also developed and launched a survey of the membership with respect to DEI policies and practices at their organizations about the topics below.

  • Collecting and Using Demographic Data
  • Increasing Diversity in Applicant and Awardee Pools
  • Reducing Bias in Peer Review

A comprehensive analysis for each of these areas, plus details about the methodology, can be found on the DEI Community Survey Analyses page.

The Community is now meeting as a cohesive group and is tackling additional topics such as increasing access for the disability community, and mentoring programs. We encourage everyone to join DEI Community calls.  Information is sent via the listserv prior to the call.

Here is a link to call notes, planning documents, and other resources related to the Community accessible to HRA Members only.

HRA has also launched the “Inclusive Grantmaking Initiative” (IGI). Through the IGI, we are working across all of our learning communities and with the wider biomedical research funding community to learn, share, and implement successful strategies to eliminate racism, discrimination, and bias not only in research but across the broad healthcare ecosystem.


The Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Community is being co-chaired by:

  • Kavita Bhalla, Conquer Cancer, the ASCO Foundation
  • Zoë Fuchs, TSC Alliance
  • Lindsay Redman Rivera, The Medical Foundation