i3 Governance & FundingIn 2009, faculty and staff from the iSchools at the University of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania State University, and Drexel University collaborated to design and develop the iSchool Inclusion Institute (i3) in order to address the lack of diversity among students and faculty in the information sciences. The i3 initiative is based on the premise that a diverse faculty will draw students from underrepresented groups into the information professions.
The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation has supported i3 with a series of generous grants: a one-year planning grant of $100,000, awarded in 2009; a three-year pilot grant of $600,000, awarded in 2010; a three-year renewal grant of $819,000, awarded in 2013; and most recently, a three-year renewal grant of $850,000, awarded in 2016. Additional support has come from the the iSchools Caucus (www.ischools.org), a consortium of information schools dedicated to advancing the information sciences as a broad, interdisciplinary field. The iSchools actively recruit i3 Scholars for graduate study as well as provide faculty and staff to serve as guest speakers and lecturers during the summer institutes.
Governing Structurei3 is managed by Michael Depew, Project Director, and Kayla Booth, Assistant Director. Ronald Larsen, Dean and Professor, and Rosta Farzan, Assistant Professor, serve as Principal Investigators.
Goals & The Case for DiversityTo meet the growing economic demand for graduates in science and technology fields, the i3 initiative intends to accomplish the following goals:
- Increase the number of highly-skilled graduate students and faculty in the information sciences and retain those individuals in U.S. colleges and universities
- Provide role models for students and faculty from underrepresented groups
- Better represent and serve the various diverse communities across the country
- Promote innovation and creativity across the information sciences and related disciplines