Leadership, Ethics, and Trust

Keeping Government Diversity Efforts Strong in Hard Economic Times


Over the last five years, we’ve seen multiple local and state government efforts to improve the diversity of the public-sector workforce, to fix pay inequity, and to foster a respectful and inclusive workplace. These initiatives have been supported by a number of studies, in both the private and public sectors, demonstrating that employees of different backgrounds, ages, genders, races, and ethnicities bring new ideas to an organization and spur innovation. Keeping that idea front and center is particularly important as 2021 begins and local government leaders face prolonged budget struggles that lead to hiring freezes and the specter of layoffs. Such actions have the potential of stymying diversity efforts.

  • Publication date: February 2021
  • Authors: Katherine Barrett and Richard Greene