Person sitting on bench looking at a lake

Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion

Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion

This is a living document. As we undertake new efforts we will add them to this list. Here are some of the steps we are taking so far:


Transportation policies and investments have played a significant role in creating and perpetuating the deep racial inequities that exist in America today. Due in part to historic exclusion from decision-making processes, we have created a transportation system that has limited access by people of color and other marginalized groups to work, education, health, and other opportunities. Our highways have benefitted suburban and mostly white commuters while destroying and isolating many urban Black and brown communities. Transit investments too often have prioritized rail access for higher-income communities over bus and rail access for lower-income communities. Freight facilities and traffic have been concentrated in disadvantaged communities, disrupting those communities and worsening air quality and pedestrian safety.

ITS-Davis acknowledges that racism has influenced academic research, instruction and training, and the makeup of our research community. We recognize that our research has helped to shape America’s transportation system and its inequities. ITS-Davis takes seriously its responsibility to address this racism and is committed to research and higher education that is diverse, equitable, inclusive and that furthers justice.


Acknowledging this history, ITS-Davis and the Policy Institute are taking action to create a more accessible and equitable transportation future—one that serves all people–and to instill the principles of diversity, equity, and inclusion into the core values of our organizations, in our research, education, and outreach programs, and our workplace.

  • Building a diverse and inclusive work, teaching, and research environment
    • Publicizing staff and faculty/research job opportunities beyond our traditional audience
    • Emphasizing diversity, equity, and inclusion principles in job announcements and interviews
    • Developing a staff training program around these principles
    • Holding staff events that celebrate diversity
    • Pursuing more diverse voices in our leadership positions
  • Building a strong mobility justice research program
    • Directing internal research funding to academic and research faculty proposing mobility justice projects
    • Making permanent the Transportation Equity and Environmental Justice Advisory Group (TEEJAG), comprised of representatives from EJ and community groups, with funding allocated to compensate the members–to participate in, support, and advise mobility justice research initiatives
    • Recruiting faculty members, post-doctoral scholars, and graduate students with interest and expertise in mobility justice
    • Evaluating research proposals through an equity lens
    • Providing financial support for equity-focused organizations to participate in research partnerships
    • Attracting more diverse perspectives to review research proposals
  • Sharing our work through accessible and inclusive events and outreach
    • Attracting more diverse participants to speak at and participate in our events
    • Identifying funding to provide financial support for event attendance by members of community-based organizations and other equity-focused groups
    • Including more diversity in the perspectives we promote on transportation through our communication materials
  • Supporting a student-led Mobility Justice Working Group across the UC Davis campus
  • Launching a student-led Transportation Equity Reading Group across the UC system
  • Launching an Environmental and Social Justice Fellowship program for members of community-based organizations and environmental justice groups
  • Joining with the three other Institutes of Transportation Studies within the University of California system to form an Equity Committee to assess transportation equity research, teaching, and engagement activities across the four ITS branches.

UC Davis Land Acknowledgement Statement

We should take a moment to acknowledge the land on which we are gathered. For thousands of years, this land has been the home of Patwin people. Today, there are three federally recognized Patwin tribes: Cachil DeHe Band of Wintun Indians of the Colusa Indian Community, Kletsel Dehe Wintun Nation, and Yocha Dehe Wintun Nation. 

The Patwin people have remained committed to the stewardship of this land over many centuries. It has been cherished and protected, as elders have instructed the young through generations. We are honored and grateful to be here today on their traditional lands.