All CR2C2 activities, including the Research Activities, will be viewed through the lens of Equity 360. Equity 360 is a holistic, multilayer approach to promote, integrate, measure, and monitor equity throughout all Center activities. This approach’s name implies looking at the application of equity from a wide range of perspectives, including the CR2C2 transportation research. Based on its history of oppression, Region 4 is one of the least likely regions in the nation to be viewed as a leader in equity, making it an optimal location for these efforts. The transformative impact of CR2C2’s work towards making transportation equitable for all would be tremendous, especially in Region 4.
We will share our successes and failures as we navigate through the Equity 360 integration process, thus positioning CR2C2 as an Equity Learning Lab.
The first step in Equity 360 is to gain a better understanding of what equity means within the transportation context and how to promote it in the region. Therefore, a focus group at CR2C2, named Equity Council (EC), will study equity in the context of transportation research and education to be translated in a way that can be shared with and adopted by the entire consortium. This translation will become the foundation upon which equity is built into all Center activities.
Second, the EC will explore effective means of promoting equity through CR2C2 activities (e.g., student and faculty mentoring, student transportation equity competitions, virtual transportation equity seminars, etc.).
Third, the EC will develop and propose procedures that will be used to view and evaluate planned activities from an equity perspective before implementation and provide suggestions, as necessary, for better integration of equitable practices into the activities. This includes adding equity as an evaluation criterion for REE grants. In fact, one REE grant per year will be awarded based on how well it promotes equity in transportation research and/or education within the theme of the Center.
Fourth, and most importantly, since we are embarking on a unique and complex endeavor, CR2C2 will view itself as an Equity Learning Lab, through which we track and document our experiences as we design and implement our activities while always viewing them through an equity lens.