Call for proposals: Race, Inclusion and Social Equity (RAISE) Initiative

RAISE initiative

Through the Race, Inclusion and Social Equity (RAISE) initiative, Ohio State is enhancing our world-class research program on race, inclusion and social equity. Over the next decade, the university will add at least 50 tenure-track faculty members to existing scholars whose research can help to narrow social disparities in educational attainment, health outcomes, rates of incarceration, political representation, environmental impacts and economic well-being.

  • Current call for proposals: Ohio State colleges are invited to submit proposals for RAISE faculty positions through the 2022-23 review process. Proposals are due by Friday, July 29, 2022.

Ohio State to recruit 25 research faculty focused on race and equity

As part of Ohio State’s expansion of high-impact research, the university is now recruiting the first 25 faculty positions to be created through the RAISE initiative.

Read the Ohio State News story

Proposals approved in 2021-22

After evaluating proposals for interdisciplinary and community-engaged research, the Office of Academic Affairs has approved 25 RAISE faculty positions during two calls for proposals that were completed during the 2021-22 academic year. The search process for these positions is ongoing; most will be recruited by autumn 2023. 

Positions have been approved in each of the six RAISE research areas.

  • College(s) involved: Education and Human Ecology; and Nursing
  • Positions involved: 3

The colleges of Nursing and Education and Human Ecology will expand and amplify interdisciplinary scientific inquiry in cardiovascular health interventions and the role of stress, health disparities, racial discrimination and social determinants of health on cardiovascular health across the lifespan. The new faculty researchers, like current faculty investigators, will lead and collaborate on externally funded studies to identify mechanisms of health disparity and develop interventions to improve health outcomes.

  • College(s) involved: Dentistry
  • Positions involved: 1

The College of Dentistry, in collaboration with Nationwide Children’s Hospital, will continue to build a strong pediatric oral health collaborative to dismantle barriers that prevent or impede proper dental care to underserved populations. The collaborative researches and devises strategies to eliminate those barriers.

  • College(s) involved: Arts and Sciences; Engineering; and Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences

  • Positions involved: 3

Through the Climate, Race, and Place cohort, Ohio State will elevate its globally recognized expertise in the science of climate change and adaptation. Through a cluster hire of faculty, the university will holistically investigate the racial disparities and social inequities of climate impacts and help shape responsive adaptations. Working in an interdisciplinary team between the College of Arts and Sciences, College of Engineering, and College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences, this cohort will amplify scholarship in the areas of climate science, climate analytics, and climate adaptation across various geographic scales.

  • College(s) involved: Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences
  • Positions involved: 3

The College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences will recruit a cohort of social, biological, and ecological scientists focused on urban health and environmental problems that are experienced differentially based on race and class. This new Urban Health, Environment, and Race Outcomes (Urban HERO) Collaborative will be a consortium that will focus on the generation and rapid dissemination of new solutions to racial inequities and social disparities in environmental and health outcomes.  The collaborative will leverage the outreach strengths of Ohio State University Extension (OSUE) and engagement with the CFAES Knowledge Exchange (KX), a university/community partnership for research integration, translation, and communication.

  • College(s) involved: Arts and Sciences
  • Positions involved: 3

The Global Black Arts cohort in the College of Arts and Sciences will support systematic investigation of the ethics and aesthetics that foster enduring artistic creations that are critical and wary of the spaces they can and cannot occupy.  This cohort encompasses critical, performance, and studio practices in relation to, and as part of, the concerns of Black communities.

  • College(s) involved: Arts and Sciences; and Engineering
  • Positions involved: 2

The College of Arts and Sciences and the Knowlton School of Architecture in the College of Engineering will advance research that focuses on the intersection of race and the built environment. This cross-college collaboration is innovative in its desire to hire a historian of architecture and race as well as an urban designer — bringing to Ohio State two scholars who focus on racialized architecture from the perspectives of both theory and practice. The addition of two scholars in this cluster will bolster these units’ already impressive national reputations; attract strong pools of graduate students who would shape the future of the field; bring about curricular innovation relating to race and the built environment; and broaden engagement projects in Ohio and beyond.

  • College(s) involved: Arts and Sciences, Moritz College of Law and John Glenn College of Public Affairs
  • Positions involved: 4

By attracting a cohort of early career and senior scholars, the College of Arts and Sciences, Moritz College of Law and John Glenn College of Public Affairs will enhance research at the intersection of race, criminal justice and public affairs. By collaborating with one another and existing Ohio State faculty, the cohort of new faculty will study how to improve police-citizen interactions and law-enforcement practices more generally, prosecutorial and judicial decision-making, and the effectiveness of other criminal justice institutions.

  • College(s) involved: Arts and Sciences
  • Positions involved: 3

The College of Arts and Sciences seeks to address social equity and racial disparities in three core educational areas essential for all STEM students: chemistry, mathematics and physics. By attracting a faculty member in each discipline, the proposal will enhance research into evidence-based practices to improve learning, the student experience and measures of success, such as grades and graduation, as well as career placements in these STEM fields.

  • College(s) involved: Arts and Sciences
  • Positions involved: 2

The College of Arts and Sciences seeks to increase speech-language pathology services in Central Ohio so that fewer bilingual Spanish-English children are erroneously diverted to special education programs as they acquire English language skills. The Buckeye Bilingual Speech-Language Program will create a graduate-level bilingual speech-language pathology program at Ohio State, which will include teaching, research and community outreach through the Speech-Language-Hearing Clinic.

  • College(s) involved: Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences
  • Positions involved: 1

With a focus on community-engaged research and OSU Extension programming in urban communities, this College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences faculty member will help to raise the visibility and accessibility of Ohio State expertise and resources. The position will advance the university’s efforts to address equity in the areas of food, health and wellness, environment, economic and workforce development, community leadership and other concerns facing Ohio’s urban communities. Among other connections, this position will complement the Urban Health, Environment, and Race Outcomes (Urban HERO) Collaborative approved through RAISE.

2022-23 Call for Proposals

Starting with the 2022-23 call for proposals, the Office of Academic Affairs will utilize an annual review process for RAISE positions. This timing is designed to enable colleges, schools and departments to better align RAISE recruitment with their other faculty recruitment efforts. 

Proposals may be submitted for any of the six RAISE research areas:

  • Race, Economic Opportunity and Leadership.
  • Race, Justice and Public Safety
  • Race and Educational Equity — with an emphasis on STEAM education;
  • Race and Health Equity
  • Race, the Arts and Creative Expression
  • Race, Resources, and the Environment

Criteria, Process and Deadlines

  • Format: Submissions must follow the structure as detailed in this call for proposals, and submissions may not exceed 4,000 words.
  • Deadline: Proposals are due by Friday, July 29, 2022. The proposals will be reviewed by the RAISE Proposal Review Committee.
  • Funding support: The university will provide a portion of the funding to establish these positions, commensurate with the proposals.

All Tenure Initiating Units (TIUs) are eligible to submit a proposal, and all proposals require a letter of support from the dean(s) of the TIU(s) submitting the proposal. We are interested in proposals that build on the work of and directly engage current faculty members. We are interested in synergy and collaborations between units. Interdisciplinary hiring, particularly planned clusters (hires of 2 or 3 faculty) that foster purposeful and systematic interdisciplinary collaboration will be prioritized by the selection committee.

We are especially interested in building strong scholarly communities around these research areas and recognize that departments or units may not be equipped to provide the sole community for researchers in these areas. Therefore, TIUs are strongly encouraged to partner with centers and institutes that are not TIUs. Departments, schools, and colleges may collaborate in proposing positions.

National best practices suggest that joint appointments are less challenging for senior faculty appointments. When considering joint appointments for assistant professors, supports should be clearly articulated that provide an environment for their success in joint appointments. We encourage creative ways of engaging faculty across units, departments, and disciplines, and leveraging the research focus of the RAISE initiative. If a joint appointment is proposed, a description of how this appointment will be supported is required.

Structure for proposals

Proposals are due by Friday, July 29, 2022, using the following format. Proposals are limited to 4,000 words total - excluding the letter of support from your college(s).

Proposed positions should begin by outlining the scholarly profile of the desired candidates (the anticipated rank, number of faculty, TIUs involved, and sub-disciplinary research areas of greatest interest) and include  the following characteristics:

  1. Consistency with the RAISE research area and salience to that area: Proposals should describe research programs that will address salient issues in at least one of the six RAISE research areas (Race, Economic Opportunity and Leadership; Race, Justice and Public Safety; Race and Educational Equity — with an emphasis on STEAM education; Race and Health Equity; Race, Resources, and the Environment; and Race, the Arts and Creative Expression), with a focus on the most pressing issues with regard to social equity and racial disparities in the selected area. Proposals should establish the importance of the research to address issues of broad importance, demonstrate change and have measurable outcomes for assessing success.
  2. Connectivity: Proposals should describe how the research program connects to the university’s existing strengths in social equity and racial disparities research or how the research program would seek to build, through a cluster hire of new faculty working in a particular area, a cohesive research group across departments, schools, colleges and/or campuses that will impact our community. Proposals should clearly identify existing scholars on the Columbus campus and/or regional campuses with aligned research interests, existing resources or infrastructure that may support the proposed position or cluster of positions (e.g., college and university centers and institutes), and the position’s alignment with research priorities. Priority will be given to proposals that are purposefully collaborative and seek to break down silos to enhance the research mission of the university.
  3. Methodological, Theoretical, and Analytical Innovation: Proposals should describe how the research will broaden and enhance the study of social equity and racial disparities and how that work translates to the broader community.
  4. Distinction: Proposals should describe how the research will increase Ohio State’s national reputation and the reputation of the college(s), school(s) and department(s). Proposals should also describe components that would bring distinction in research mentoring and broaden participation of underrepresented minorities (URM) in research excellence.
  5. Work plan: The proposal will describe how the community envisioned will function differently as a result of this program. Enhanced engagement of colleges in providing support systems, community building and mentoring will be required (please describe your mentoring in detail below). Proposals should detail what proactive steps will be taken in recruitment, retention, collaborative initiatives, policies, and evaluation to ensure success (please describe your hiring plan in detail below). The work plan must articulate what success will look like and how it will be measured.

The RAISE initiative is grounded in cultural transformation to ensure that we recruit and retain outstanding scholars. Creating an inclusive culture requires sustained effort and accountability. Proposals should describe the involved department/school(s) and college(s) DEI infrastructure, practices, and policies, how outcomes are being assessed, and progress to date. If assessment is not currently occurring, please describe what steps will be taken to assess current infrastructure, practices, and policies.

As a guide, we have developed cultural transformation learning objectives, which identify specific areas of focus for cultural transformation. Each proposal should highlight alignment as appropriate with the listed areas; proposals are not required to address all of the following: diverse faculty recruitment; faculty inclusion; faculty retention; scholarship, research, and creative expression; climate; interventions/learnings/trainings; fostering equity; curriculum; outreach and engagement; and institutionalizing DEI via policies, procedures, and daily patterns of operation. Within each of these areas, several specific practices consistent with the goals of cultural transformation are described. Proposals should highlight synergistic activities.

Define a mentoring plan appropriate to this position and the proposed research program, expanding on the details noted in the work plan. For assistant professors and early associate professors, describe the process of identifying appropriate mentors and what the program of mentoring will entail. For late associate professors and professors, describe the mechanisms through which the candidate will be integrated into the senior research community and what expectations for mentorship and leadership they will be expected to provide. In all cases, a description should be provided of how the faculty member’s progress will be monitored and how the mentoring program will be evaluated.

Proposals must provide an expected hiring timeline and description of process consistent with the work plan. Specifically, proposals should detail a strategy utilizing best practices for recruiting a robust and diverse candidate pool. If pursing a cluster hire across TIUs, or a joint hire, the proposal must articulate how the units will collaborate in the process.

Draft of position announcement, exclusive of required statements (e.g., EEO information, etc.). 

Proposals submitted by a department or school must include a letter of support from the college dean indicating support of the proposal and articulation or affirmation of the college supports described in the work plan. The letter should also note how award of this proposal will align with the strategic mission of the units involved. 

Consulting and Questions

At any point in the process, and especially as they are considering and crafting proposals, departments and schools are invited to consult with any member of the RAISE proposal review committee for guidance.

RAISE Proposal Review Committee Members

  • Norman W. Jones, Professor of English; Dean, The Ohio State University at Mansfield
  • Tracy Kitchel, Professor of Agriscience Education; Senior Associate Dean and Director of Faculty and Staff Affairs, College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences
  • Rachel Garshick Kleit, Professor of City and Regional Planning in the Knowlton School of Architecture and John Glenn College of Public Affairs; Associate Dean of Faculty Affairs in the College of Engineering
  • Cheryl T. Lee, Dorothy M. Davis Chair in Cancer Research; Chair, Department of Urology, College of Medicine; Chief Health Equity Officer, Vice President of OSU Physicians and the Faculty Group Practice, the Wexner Medical Center
  • Trevon D. Logan (chair), Hazel C. Youngberg Trustees Distinguished Professor of Economics; Associate Dean, College of Arts and Sciences; Special Assistant to the Provost 
  • Peter J. Mohler, Interim Vice President for Research, The Ohio State University; Vice Dean for Research in the Ohio State College of Medicine; Chief Scientific Officer of the Wexner Medical Center 
  • Helen I. Malone, Professor of Educational Studies, College of Education and Human Ecology; Vice Provost for Academic Policy and Faculty Resources, Office of Academic Affairs
  • Susan V. Olesik, Distinguished University Professor of Chemistry and Biochemistry and Dean of Natural and Mathematical Sciences, College of Arts and Sciences
  • Wendy Smooth, Associate Professor of Women's, Gender and Sexuality Studies; Associate Dean, Diversity Equity and Inclusion and Chief Diversity Officer, College of Arts and Sciences