The Productivity Puzzle: can diversity and inclusion unlock the key to growth?

Hosted by The Inclusion Initiative

Online public event


Dr Claire Crawford

Dr Claire Crawford

Belton Flournoy

Belton Flournoy

Dr Aliya Hamid Rao

Dr Aliya Hamid Rao

Daniel Jolles

Daniel Jolles


Dr Grace Lordan

Dr Grace Lordan

Weak productivity in Britain is an acute problem. Explanations have included insufficient necessary skills, an overinvestment in unnecessary skills at the university level, capital shallowing and too little creative destruction. In this webinar we explore a different explanation.

We ask whether a failure to recruit and operationalise diverse talent is an underlying root cause of slow growth. Join Grace Lordan where she will be discussing with a panel of experts the theory and evidence behind the diversity and productivity link. 

Meet our speakers and chair

Claire Crawford (@claire_l_crawf) is an Associate Professor of Economics in the UCL Centre for Education Policy and Equalising Opportunities and a Research Fellow of the Institute for Fiscal Studies. She is particularly interested in understanding inequalities in these outcomes and how policy can help reduce these gaps. Claire has a strong track record of high impact research, including giving evidence to a number of select committees on education, social mobility and diversity and inclusion issues. Her work on higher education access and contextualised admissions was submitted as an impact case study to REF2021 by the University of Warwick. 

Belton Flournoy (@AussieBelton) is founder of Protiviti UK's LGBT+ group, which won best LGBT+ network in 2019 by the Inclusive Tech Alliance. Belton was also the founder of Pride in the City for Pride in London, where he ran a Mayor backed initiative dedicated to increasing diversity and inclusivity across London businesses. He has over a decade of experience supporting clients with deploying strategic solutions across some of the world’s leading financial services institutions, while maintaining a strong passion for ensuring diversity and inclusivity remain high on organisations business agenda. 

Aliya Hamid Rao (@aliyahrao) is a sociologist and an Assistant Professor in the Department of Methodology. She uses a gendered lens to examine the institutions of paid work and the domestic realm of the family. Her first book, Crunch Time: How Married Couples Confront Unemployment, was published by the University of California Press (2020). Aliya has articles published in (or forthcoming) in peer reviewed journals like the American Sociological ReviewWork, Employment and SocietyJournal of Marriage and Family, and Gender & Society. She has also written on these topics of work, family, and gender for mainstream publications like the Atlantic, Quartz, and Harvard Business Review

Daniel Jolles is a Research Assistant in Behavioural Science at The Inclusion Initiative. He is currently completing his PhD in Psychology at the University of Essex, where he has focused on applying Behavioural Science to questions of age-diversity and inclusion in the workplace. His specific research interests include decision-making in the hiring of older workers and older worker attitudes towards work and retirement. Daniel's current research centres around a large-scale productivity task with large firms that would allow him to understand what enables teams to work better together and produce simple tasks that organisations can take to improve performance. 

Grace Lordan (@profgracelordan) is the author of Think Big, the Founding Director of The Inclusion Initiative and Associate Professor at the London School of Economics and Political Science. Her academic writings have been published in top international journals and she has written for the Financial TimesFortuneFast Company and Harvard Business Review.

More about this event

TII (@lse_tii) is a research center at LSE that is creating Inclusive leaders. TII does this by bringing together teaching, research and practice to build more inclusive work environments.

This webinar launches a new project, Diversity and Productivity: from education to work.

Twitter Hashtag for this event: #LSETII

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