Center for Opioid Epidemiology & Policy Commitment to Equity | NYU Langone Health

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Center for Opioid Epidemiology & Policy Center for Opioid Epidemiology & Policy Commitment to Equity

Center for Opioid Epidemiology & Policy Commitment to Equity

NYU Langone’s Center for Opioid Epidemiology and Policy is dedicated to increasing equity and combating racism and other forms of discrimination at the individual and structural levels. We see diversity, equity, and inclusion as central to all aspects of our work as a center. We also recognize that achieving equity requires sustained effort informed by continual learning, listening, and self-interrogation. Here, we highlight some of our ongoing work to these ends.

Promoting Equity in Research

We aim to promote diversity, equity, and inclusion, and especially antiracism, in formulating our research questions and study designs, in forming our investigative teams, in engaging with research participants, and in the interpretation and dissemination of our findings. For example, several ongoing projects examine racial and ethnic disparities in the effects of policies to address opioid-related harms, with attention to the role of racism in driving observed disparities. As another example, we are adding questions about experiences with law enforcement to our primary data collection efforts.

Awarding Funding for Impactful Research

To support research that combats racism, the center’s Tarlise Townsend Memorial Pilot Project Program grants focus on awards to individuals conducting innovative and impactful research on racial and ethnic disparities in the impact of the overdose crisis. Each year, we especially encourage proposals by scholars from marginalized racial and ethnic groups.

Translating Research into Policy and Practice

Through congressional testimony, media engagement, writing for the public, and related efforts, we work to translate our research into policy and practice that reduce inequalities related to substance use. In addition, we are working to increase our engagement with relevant community-based organizations to both inform the development of and communicate the results of our research.

Strengthening Hiring and Mentoring Practices

We are committed to strengthening diverse representation and retention of center members at all levels. This includes, for example, proactive recruitment and continued support of minoritized students, interns, faculty, and staff.

Improving Representation in Academic Literature and Citations

Citations comprise a key currency of academia, but, too often, the work of a narrow group of scholars is disproportionately read and cited. We work to combat this in our own practice. For instance, we have compiled a list of Black scholars who write about substance use and the ongoing overdose crisis to increase the visibility of their work.

Engaging with the Academic Community

In our collaborations, seminar series, and other center activities, we aim to engage with scholars with a wide array of identities and backgrounds. Our seminar series comprises academics from a range of backgrounds and seeks to highlight issues of inequity related to substance use.