Skip to content Skip to navigation

Diversity Works: The Diversity Bonus--How Great Teams Pay Off in the Knowledge Economy (Video)

What if workforce diversity is more than simply the right thing to do in order to make society more integrated and just? What if diversity can also improve the performance of universities, the impact of nonprofits, and the bottom line of businesses or any other organization facing complex challenges in the knowledge economy? It can.

Diversity is an incredibly valuable asset to any team. In April 2018, Diversity Works hosted a discussion with Scott E. Page, professor of complex systems, political science, and economics, the University of Michigan – Ann Arbor. During that discussion, Professor Page shared ideas from his recent book The Diversity Bonus and discussed findings regarding the power of diversity in the workplace.

In this talk, Professor Scott E.Page, author of The Diversity Bonus, discusses the how and why, and he does so using models and data.

  • “When team members think differently…their collective performance includes a diversity bonus, an extra amount. That bonus is a quantifiable, measurable value add…Diversity bonuses challenge narrow “meritocratic” thinking. Diversity bonuses mean that the best team will not, as a rule, consist of the best performing individuals. The best team will include diverse thinkers.
  • Bonuses happen for a reason…you must identify the tasks where diversity bonuses will exist, you must create space and opportunity for people to contribute, you must reduce biases inhiring and recruiting, you must adopt policies and protocols that enable diversity bonuses, and, most important, you must practice.” (“Scott E. Page on The Diversity Bonus,” Princeton University Press Blog)

Scott Page, the Leonid Hurwicz Collegiate Professor of Complex Systems, Political Science, and Economics at the University of Michigan and an external faculty member of the Santa Fe Institute, is a leading thinker, writer, and speaker whose ideas and advice are sought after by corporations, nonprofits, universities, and governments around the world, makes a clear and compellingly pragmatic case for diversity and inclusion. He presents overwhelming evidence that teams that include different kinds of thinkers outperform homogenous groups on complex tasks, producing what he calls “diversity bonuses.” These bonuses include improved problem solving, increased innovation, and more accurate predictions—all of which lead to better performance and results. Drawing on research in economics, psychology, computer science, and many other fields, The Diversity Bonus also tells the stories of people and organizations that have tapped the power of diversity to solve complex problems. The result changes the way we think about diversity in the workplace—and far beyond it.

Find the recording of Professor Page's talk here.

Resource Type: 
Target Audience: 
All Graduate Students, Postdoctoral Scholars
Time Commitment: 
Learning Experience: