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Our Compelling Interests Series


At a time when society is swiftly transforming, the Our Compelling Interests book series lays out the premise that for a democracy to thrive, diversity is critical. This vision comes as we are contemplating a changing social landscape. Major demographic changes taking place in America today necessitate a renewed discussion about diversity. The question we must now ask ourselves is whether we are indeed planning properly, and what shape that plan must take if we are to be successful and prosperous moving forward together. The series promises to explore diversity—in racial, socioeconomic, gender, religious, sexual, and other forms—through accessible, sophisticated, and balanced treatments by leading scholars, writers, intellectuals, and commentators.

This series launched in the fall of 2016 under the leadership and editing of Dr. Earl Lewis and Dr. Nancy Cantor. With support from The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, Our Compelling Interests is one of the key projects housed at the University of Michigan's Center for Social Solutions. Its next planned volume will discuss the failure of colorblind solutions to unequal education in the U.S. Future volumes have been commissioned on educational testing, crime and incarceration, art and creativity, and education and social mobility. With the aid of a steering committee, additional publications are being conceived.
 


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Volume I | Our Compelling Interests: The Value of Diversity for Democracy and a Prosperous Society

In his essay for the first installment of the Our Compelling Interests book series, demographer and author William H. Frey stated, “I am convinced that the United States is in the midst of a pivotal period ushering in extraordinary shifts in the nation’s racial demographic makeup. If planned for properly,” he continued, “these demographic changes will allow the country to face the future with growth and vitality..." The question we must now ask ourselves is whether we are indeed planning properly, and what shape that plan must take if we are to be successful and prosperous moving forward together.

The Our Compelling Interests series lays out the premise that for a democracy to thrive, diversity is critical. The initiative comes at a time when we are contemplating a changing societal landscape. The series promises to explore diversity—in racial, socioeconomic, gender, religious, regional, sexual, and other forms—through accessible, sophisticated, and balanced treatments by leading scholars, writers, intellectuals, and commentators. The goal is lively, informed analysis, not social or political bromides. 

Hardcover | September 2016
$27.95 | 336 pp.
ISBN: 9780691170480 


The hardcover and eBook editions are also available from Amazon.


Volume II | The Diversity Bonus: How Great Teams Pay Off in the Knowledge Economy

What if workforce diversity is more than simply the right thing to do? What if diversity and inclusion can also improve the bottom line for businesses and other organizations facing complex challenges in the knowledge economy? It can. And The Diversity Bonus shows us how and why. In this volume, Scott Page, Professor of Complex Systems, Political Science, and Economics at the University of Michigan and a thought leader whose ideas and advice are sought after by corporations, nonprofits, universities, and governments around the world, makes a clear and pragmatic case for diversity and inclusion.


Hardcover | September 2017
$27.95 | 328 pp.
ISBN: 9780691176888


The hardcover, eBook, and Audiobook editions are also available from Amazon.


Volume III | Out of Many Faiths: Religious Diversity and the American Promise

Will America’s identity as a Judeo-Christian nation shift as dozens of different backgrounds grow in numbers and influence? In what ways will minority religious communities have to adapt in order to be welcomed in American society? In addressing these and other questions, Eboo Patel shows how America’s promise is a guarantee of equal rights and dignity for all and how that promises the foundation of all of America’s unrivaled strength as a nation. 

This volume also includes incisive commentaries by John Inazu, Robert Jones, and Laurie Patton on American civil religion, faith and law, and the increasing number of nonreligious Americans.


Hardcover | September 2018
$27.95
240 pp.
ISBN: 9780691189000


The hardcover and eBook editions are also available from Amazon.