Virtual Settings and Unconscious Bias

Webinar Category
Webinar Date
Webinar Description
6/8/20 Monday: Virtual Settings and Unconscious Bias
Presented by: Amy Bonomi, PhD, MPH, Nelia Viveiros, EdD, LLB

While employees use videoconferencing now more than ever, there’s an issue happening beneath the surface with platforms like Zoom, Teams and Skype beyond stress and mental health that’s affecting its users.  These virtual settings are ripe for unconscious bias — or, attitudes towards people or associated stereotypes with them without our conscious knowledge.  These can be related to gender, race, ethnicity, sexual orientation, and other identity points.  This seminar explores how unconscious bias manifests in virtual settings through language, symbolism and nonverbal cues to privilege and disadvantage at social identity points.  The seminar also explores the range of reactions that can manifest when first discovering our own unconscious biases. 

Link to PowerPoint slides

Dr. Amy Bonomi is Director of the MSU Extension’s Children and Youth Institute, and Chair of the Board of MSU’s Women’s Leadership Institute.  Based on her experiences as a woman leader, Dr. Bonomi co-edited (with Callie Rennison) Women Leading Change in Academia: Breaking the Glass Ceiling, Cliff and Slipper (Cognella). This book convenes the perspectives of 23 diverse academic leaders from across the United States on critical issues facing women leaders in higher education, and was the recipient of the 2020 Most Promising New Textbook by the Textbook & Academic Authors Association.  From 2013-2018, Dr. Bonomi was chair of MSU’s Human Development and Family Studies Department and special advisor in the Provost’s Office. 

Dr. Nelia Viveiros is Vice Chancellor for Diversity, Equity and Inclusion at the University of Colorado Denver | Anschutz Medical Campus. She also holds a faculty appointment in the School of Education and Human Development.  Dr. Viveiros’ focus in higher education has been on managing large-scale change efforts and mitigating conflict and trauma in the workspace, especially within the context of higher education and with the lens of diversity, equity and inclusion.  In 2020, she was awarded the University Thomas Jefferson Award for her achievement in advancing the cause of civic responsibility and for her commitment to the welfare and rights of the individual.