The global inclusivity
report 2022

Who cares about inclusion?

Most academics agree that inclusion is important. More than 80% of academics believe inclusion is important in the academic workplace, in research methodology and practices, and in publishing practices. Being inclusive of all in the academic workplace received the highest score of 84%, followed by 81% for both research methodology and practices, and publishing practices.

Inclusion is less important in 2022. Inclusion in the academic workplace is marginally less important to academics in 2022 (84%), than it was in 2020 (89%).

Inclusion is more important to women. More women (91%) than men (84%) believe it’s important to be inclusive in the academic workplace. The same was true in 2020, but figures were slightly higher then at 93% of women and 87% of men.

Low and middle income regions give top scores. Inclusion in academia is most important to three low and middle income regions – Asia, Latin America and ME&A – who gave the highest scores for at least two of the three options (between 88% and 92%). By contrast, North America scored the lowest across all three options – 70% for ‘In research methodology and practices’ and ‘In publishing practices’, and 76% for ‘Inclusion in the academic workplace’ – 17% down on 2020.

The importance of inclusivity in the academic workplace

Question 1: On a scale of 1 to 10, where 1 is ‘Not at all important’ and 10 is ‘Very important’, how important do you think it is to be “inclusive of all” in the academic workplace, research methodology, and practice?

Percentage scored 8–10. 2022. 2020 figures in brackets.

Region In the academic workplace In research methodology & practice In publishing practices
Asia 91.8% (90.6%) 88.5% 86.3%
Australasia 86.9% (89.9%) 78.9% 77.6%
Middle E & Africa 86.8% (84.6%) 92% 92%
N & W Europe & UK 83.8% 80.2% 79.3%
N America 75.9% (93.3%) 69.6% 69.6%
S & E Europe 88.6% (86.7%) 80.3% 84.1%
Latin America 91.1% (90.4%) 84.4% 91.1%
Total global results 84.1% (88.6%) 81.2% 81.2%

What are the benefits of inclusion in academia?

Diversity of thought top benefit

90% of academics believe than inclusion ‘Promotes different ways of thinking’. This was also the highest scoring area in 2020, with 92% choosing this option. Also in the top three are ‘Creates an open learning culture’ (88%) and ‘Has a positive effect on creative thinking’ (87%).

Broad range of benefits

Academics in low and middle income regions, specifically Asia, Latin America and ME&A, believe that inclusion benefits academia in multiple ways, giving high scores for most options.

No benefit

One in five academics thinks that ‘Inclusivity doesn’t provide any noticeable benefits’ – this is around a 50% increase from 2020. Nearly double the proportion of men say that inclusivity doesn’t provide any noticeable benefits – 22% versus 12% of women.

Why no benefit?

Worryingly, 22% of researchers believe inclusion in academia has no benefits, and here are some of their reasons.

Wrong focus
"Inclusivity in academia is framed wrongly – the real inclusivity issue pertains to social class – not the focus on gender, sexuality, etc. which currently pervades discussions of inclusivity." Academic in UK

Caution is needed
"Caution is needed. There is a history of inclusivity policies (e.g. targeted recruitment) that have distorted genuine attempts at balance." Demographic data not provided

"It is just a buzzword." Demographic data not provided

Quality risk
"The academy is based of talent, merit, intelligence and independent thinking – not on personal characteristics that happen to be trendy at the time. There is a real danger that inclusivity morphs with political correctness, which produces ideology, not knowledge." Demographic data not provided

Poorly implemented
"The way that inclusivity is being implemented seems to prioritise the rights of very vocal but small groups at the expense of the majority who seem to have been silenced." Researcher in UK

The benefits of inclusivity in academia

Question 2: To what extent do you agree or disagree that inclusivity in academia will affect the following areas


Percentage agree or strongly agree in 2022. 2020 figures in brackets.

Statement %
Promotes different ways of thinking 90.1 (91.8)
Creates an open learning culture 88.2 (90.4)
Has a positive effect on creative thinking 87.2
Enriches the learning experience 87.1
Enriches the quality of research outputs 79.8
Improves the relevance of research to those outside of academia 78.2
Improves the wellbeing and performance of those in academia 78.2
Creates a more motivated workforce 77.1 (81)
Inclusivity doesn’t provide any noticeable benefits 21.6 (13.2)

How important is inclusion across the research ecosystem?

High priority for academics

Inclusion is important to most academics (78%), but this is down from 2020 (86%). From a regional perspective, it’s most important for academics in ME&A (90%), Latin America (89%) and Asia (84%), but least significant for those in North America (62%)

Moderate priority for publishers & funders

Just over half (53%) of academics believe inclusion is important to publishers (with a high of 73% in Asia and a low of 30% in Australasia). Even lower scores were given for funders – 52% of academics thought inclusion was important to them, with a low of 28% in the UK and a high of 69% in Asia

Depends on the region

Low and middle income regions rank most categories higher than upper- middle and high-income regions

Career stage matters

Earlier career stages score higher, especially students and 1-5 years post-PhD

More important to women personally

Women and men have slightly different perceptions – 88% of women versus 75% of men consider inclusivity important to them personally, but both scores have reduced from 2020. For other options, the reverse is true – men score higher in all other areas compared to women regarding perceived importance to other stakeholders, most apparent for ‘Academia in general’ (67% versus 57%) and ‘Your institution'

How important is inclusivity?

Question 3: On a scale of 1 to 10, where 1 is ‘Not at all important’ and 10 is ‘Very important, in your opinion how important is inclusivity to:

Percentage scored 8–10. 2020 figures in brackets.

Response %
You personally 65.1 (67.9)
Academia in general 61.6 (63.5)
Your peers 59.5
Policymakers 56.8 (52.6)
Publishers 52.7
Funders 51.5


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