Seven BU Academic Departments Selected for Emerging Scholars Program 2022-23

March 30, 2022— BU Diversity & Inclusion (BU D&I) has announced the selection of seven BU academic departments to host underrepresented, early-career scholars in the 2022-23 academic year as part of the Emerging Scholars Program.

In spring 2019, University Provost and Chief Academic Officer Dr. Jean Morrison announced the launch of  two key initiatives intended to increase diversity within BU’s faculty: The University Scholars Program and The Target of Opportunity Program. As part of the University Scholars Program, which seeks to normalize inclusion of underrepresented scholars in academia, the Emerging Scholars Program is overseen by BU D&I and provides funds to BU departments to support individuals or groups of emerging scholars from historically underrepresented racial/ethnic groups, through various means, such as single-day symposia, multiple-day mini conferences, or multiple-day visits.

Now in its third year, the Emerging Scholars Program supports BU academic departments in hosting scholars who are not yet formally on the job market, are in postdoctoral fellowships, or in rare cases, are in assistant professorships. Participating departments hear new forms of inquiry that have emerged in their field and deepen connections to early-career scholars, which can help to diversify future potential faculty search pools.

This year’s awardees span a variety of disciplines and offer new and innovative ways of engaging the visiting scholars. We are proud to announce the departments that will host Emerging Scholars Programs next year below: 


Emerging Scholars in Integrative Biology 

The Biology department will invite six emerging scholars to campus, two each from the fields of Cell and Molecular Biology, Neurobiology, and Ecology, Behavior, and Evolution. Their research will build upon the College of Arts & Science’s strategic plan themes of One Planet-One Health, Computation & Data Science, and Social Justice & Ethics. The scholars will participate in a two-day symposium that will engage them in research presentations, networking with faculty and students, and opportunities to become acquainted with BU, the Biology department, and the city of Boston. 

American and New England Studies Program

Archives & Knowledge Keepers: Native American and Indigenous Studies and the Art of History 

The English department will invite four to five emerging scholars in Native American and Indigenous Studies to reflect upon the methods, resources, and aesthetic practices they use to tell stories about the past. This program will showcase the work of scholars who are inspired by indigenous modes of knowledge production that might engage texts but also use artifacts, oral tradition, and non-alphabetic material texts. This one-day symposium will occur in collaboration with the American & New England Studies Program’s American Studies for the Future series. 

History of Art & Architecture 

African American Art History: Present Coordinates 

Over two days in Fall 2022, the History of Art & Architecture department will host five late-stage doctoral candidates and recent postgraduates in the field of African American art history. The scholars will present cutting edge research oriented around unique trends in the field of African American art history, which might include: methodological responsibilities of historians; visual culture of Black diasporic communities; engagement with the Great Migration; intersectional identities of gender, race, and class; and issues of double marginality faced by LGBTQIA+ African Americans. 

Physics & Astronomy (collaboratively) 

Emerging Scholars in Cosmology 

The Physics and Astronomy departments have collaborated to propose a two-day visit of five emerging scholars in the field of Cosmology: three in the realm of cosmological physics, and two in the realm of cosmological astrophysics. Due to the advent of a new suite of remarkable astronomical observatories that will soon yield profound new insights into the history of the universe, cosmology is at the forefront of scientific research. The emerging scholars will present their research, network with BU faculty, staff, and students, be mentored by Physics and Astronomy faculty, and tour BU facilities and laboratories. 


Race in Global Perspective 

The Sociology department will invite junior scholars to BU whose work explores racism from a global perspective and who adopt a transnational and intersectional approach to present their work on a panel. The department seeks to create a learning environment and a space for junior scholars to share their innovative work with one another, members of the BU community, and senior scholars who will serve as their discussants. This program will dovetail with the annual Morris Lecture. 

Social Work 

Climate Justice: The Role of Social Work 

The School of Social Work will invite four emerging scholars in the field of climate justice to participate in a combination of virtual and in-person programs. While other fields, such as earth sciences, engineering, and economics have increasingly documented the impacts of the climate crisis, there is a critical need for scholarship related to the human dimension of the climate crisis, environmental injustice, and ecocide and development of effective policy, mitigation, and adaptation efforts. The four scholars will engage in roundtables, research presentations, networking activities, and a consultation and feedback workshop. 

Faculty of Computing & Data Sciences 

Emerging Scholars and CDS 

The Faculty of Computing & Data Sciences will partner with faculty from other BU departments to invite emerging scholars to participate in a two-part program that includes both virtual and in-person components. Given the competitiveness of this emerging field, this Emerging Scholars program will provide opportunities for BU faculty and students to engage with scholars producing cutting edge, innovative research, and expand the networks of both the invited scholars and the faculty and students of CDS.