Tuesday, December 9, 2014

The myth of the "power of diversity"

Minding the Campus:
... Based on a 2007 book The Difference: How the Power of Diversity Creates Better Groups, Firms, Schools and Societies by Professor Scott Page ... the idea that diversity trumps ability has become widely accepted. It is often given as a justification for continuing and even expanding “diversity” programs.

... With a chorus of believers singing this tune, it too attained the status of conventional wisdom. Hardly anyone bothered to question it – until now. ...  

... Mathematics professor Abigail Thompson ... tears Page’s work apart. She says that Page’s analysis is an example of the misuse of mathematics in the social sciences. It is something that merely gave “a scientific veneer to the diversity field,” she writes.  

... Another mathematics professor ... Aaron Robertson of Colgate University ... derided the findings of Page and Hong as “vacuous or at best highly trivial statements.”...

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