Inclusive History Project

The Inclusive History Project (IHP) is studying and documenting a comprehensive history of the University of Michigan that is attentive to diversity, equity, and inclusion and stretches across the university’s three campuses and Michigan Medicine. In undertaking this journey of institutional self-discovery, U-M commits to changing our conception of the past and to taking action that enables us to build a truly inclusive present and future.

The Inclusive History Project was first announced in June 2022. It is, in part, an outgrowth of the university’s 2017 bicentennial commemoration and other wide-ranging efforts to study and reckon with U-M’s history that are already underway on our campuses, including: the Stumbling Blocks exhibit as part of the Presidential Bicentennial Colloquia Series; the Bentley Historical Library’s African American Student Project, which aims to create a complete census of African American students who attended the university to 1970; and the process that was put in place for reviewing historical names on buildings in response to community requests.

The IHP also builds upon other U-M efforts, including our first five-year DEI strategic plan and transition to DEI 2.0, current anti-racism initiatives, and the culture journey to establish shared values.

Visit the Inclusive History Project website »

Leading the IHP are two distinguished scholars:

The IHP’s work is intentionally independent of the university administration to mitigate any real or perceived notions that its scope and analyses are constrained by campus leaders. It is housed in the National Center for Institutional Diversity.

Looking Ahead

The range of possible outcomes from the IHP include:

  • The development of new scholarship, research and courses.
  • New expressions of a more inclusive and accurate institutional narrative such as exhibits, campus tours, websites, updated ceremonies and other forms of institutional storytelling.
  • New and revitalized community relationships and partnerships.
  • Changes in our institutional landscape and physical environment such as new kinds of monuments and public art.
  • New and revised building and space names.
  • Reparative acts directed at alumni and others who have been in some measure harmed by earlier practices and policies.
  • New institutional programs and policies that address the contemporary effects of historical and systemic racism and other forms of discrimination and exclusion on our community, including but not limited to actions as permitted by law in areas such as admissions, financial aid, and faculty and staff hiring, promotion and compensation.
  • Many other tangible ideas that emerge from a thoughtful and engaged process.