Taking a “multiple forms” approach to diversity: An introduction, policy implications, and legal recommendations

Kimberly Rios, Adam B. Cohen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Scopus citations


In both academic and policy contexts, two of the most widely researched and discussed diversity ideologies are multiculturalism (i.e., acknowledgment and celebration of group differences) and colorblindness (which can involve focusing on group similarities and characteristics of individuals instead of differences). However, both diversity ideologies have potential drawbacks, and their implications for intergroup contexts beyond race and ethnicity are not well understood. Given that the United States is becoming increasingly diverse in terms of religion, gender identity, and sexual orientation as well as race and ethnicity, we propose a “multiple forms” approach to diversity ideologies, particularly multiculturalism. We suggest that explicitly emphasizing the importance of many types of diversity may be beneficial for dominant and non-dominant group members and for institutions and organizations more broadly. In this article, we present an overview of the “multiple forms” approach and what it would entail, review empirical evidence supporting its potential effectiveness, discuss the psychological and legal advantages and challenges involved in implementing such an approach, and offer concrete policy recommendations for doing so.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)104-130
Number of pages27
JournalSocial Issues and Policy Review
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 2023

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Psychology
  • Social Sciences (miscellaneous)
  • Sociology and Political Science
  • Applied Psychology


Dive into the research topics of 'Taking a “multiple forms” approach to diversity: An introduction, policy implications, and legal recommendations'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this