Upending Racism in Psychological Science: Strategies to Change How Science Is Conducted, Reported, Reviewed, and Disseminated

Ni Cole T. Buchanan, Marisol Perez, Mitchell J. Prinstein, Idia B. Thurston

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

212 Scopus citations


As efforts to end systemic racism gain momentum across various contexts, it is critical to consider antiracist steps needed to improve psychological science. Current scientific practices may serve to maintain white supremacy with significant and impactful consequences. Extant research practices reinforce norms of homogeneity within BIPOC (Black, Indigenous, and other People of Color) populations, segregate theories, and methods derived from BIPOC groups, apply disparate standards to the evaluation of research on white versus BIPOC populations, and discourage BIPOC scholars from pursuing research careers. Perhaps consequently, disparities persist on a range of psychologically relevant outcomes (e.g., mental and physical health). This article presents examples of how epistemic oppression exists within psychological science, including in how science is conducted, reported, reviewed, and disseminated. This article offers a needed contribution by providing specific concrete recommendations for different stakeholders, including those involved in the production, reporting, and gatekeeping of science as well as consumers of science. Additionally, a discussion of accountability steps are offered to ensure that psychological science moves beyond talk and toward action, with possible strategies to measure outcomes, stimulate progress, promote dialogue and action, challenge inequity, and upend the influence of white supremacy in psychological science.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1097-1112
Number of pages16
JournalAmerican Psychologist
Issue number7
StatePublished - 2021


  • Epistemic oppression
  • Psychological science
  • Racism
  • Research dissemination
  • Social justice

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Psychology


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