Belonging New strategic plan provides roadmap for enhancing diversity, equity, inclusion, and belonging at Salk


The Salk Institute is known for making fundamental discoveries in the fields of cancer, neuroscience, immunobiology, aging, plant biology, computational biology, and more.

These accomplishments depend on people—people drawing on their training, life experiences, and perspectives to ask creative questions, design and execute experiments, analyze data, and share the results.

Advancing diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) in the workplace is not only the right thing to do, studies show that diverse teams outperform homogenous ones in terms of problem-solving ability, complex decision-making, and introducing novel ideas—all critical for high-impact science. At Salk, improving DEI is a commitment to both scientific discovery and humanity.

To further diversify the Salk community and embed DEI into decision-making at all levels, the Institute’s DEI team recently published the Strategic Plan for Further Diversifying Salk. The plan is based on listening sessions, discussions, individual and committee recommendations, a campus climate survey, working group feedback following the survey report, and comments on drafts of the plan.

The plan focuses on four strategic priorities developed by Luzilda (Lucy) Arciniega, director of DEI at Salk.

The strategic plan is intended to empower grassroots work and initiatives led by individuals or groups across campus, with the DEI team acting as a resource, setting benchmarks, and reporting on progress.

“This is an important moment for the Institute,” says Sue Bacino, Salk’s vice president of People & Culture. “It’s an opportunity for the entire Salk community to help move this plan forward and build upon it through their individual efforts and collective participation.”

“These strategic priorities serve as a roadmap for how to advance diversity, equity, inclusion, and belonging across the Institute, and importantly, they enable us to measure the efficacy and impact of our efforts.”

–Lucy Arciniega, Director of dei at salk

The four strategic priorities are:

  1. Achieving Education & Understanding of DEI
    Efforts that advance knowledge of DEI help foster positive working environments. Salk is committed to building individual and collective understandings of DEI in a culture that is welcoming and productive.
  2. Increasing Access & Representation in STEM
    Salk is part of a broader national effort to diversify the STEM workforce as a commitment to scientific discovery and humanity. Equally, Salk aims to continue to increase representation with talented employees who support the STEM enterprise.
  3. Expanding & Strengthening the Salk Community
    Salk maintains a unique and innovative culture. Through attention to diversity, equity, and inclusion, all community members can continue to strengthen internal relationships and expand external relationships through philanthropy, education, community outreach, and communication.
  4. Ensuring Recognition through Accountability
    To be a leader in DEI, it is critical to measure and hone efforts to ensure that the Institute is achieving its DEI goals and communicating its achievements and progress. We also recognize individuals and groups for the hard work they are doing to change culture and achieve DEI goals.

Support a legacy where cures begin.

Scientific discovery at the Salk Institute is made possible through your annual contributions. Your support will accelerate the pace of breakthroughs in understanding disease and pave the way to new drug therapies.
Get involved

Featured Stories

Sign up for our monthly newsletter.

Latest discoveries, events & more.