The Color of ASAP: Race & Ethnicity in our Network

ASAP is an anti-racist organization. That means we are finding and rooting out racism in our network and the adaptation field. And it means we are prioritizing accessibility and inclusion in ASAP for people who identify as Black, Indigenous, or other person of color (BIPOC). 

We are asking for your support by completing a short surveyThe survey will ask for:

  • Your thoughts on the question and response options that ASAP currently uses to collect race and ethnicity information from members.
  • Your insights on how ASAP should report the racial and ethnic makeup of the membership in a way that’s concise and meaningful to the ASAP mission.

Additionally, if you identify as a Black person, Indigenous person, or other Person of Color, you will have an opportunity to share about your experience in the ASAP network. This will help us do better to ensure that you have a meaningful, useful, and inclusive experience as an ASAP member.

Why does ASAP collect information about members’ race and ethnicity?

ASAP collects information about members’ race and ethnicity to support our efforts to increase the accessibility and inclusivity of our network for people who identify as Black, Indigenous, or other person of color (BIPOC). We need information about race and ethnicity in order to understand people’s experiences and make necessary changes. 

We are focusing on race and ethnicity for two reasons:

  1. BIPOC individuals and communities are at the forefront of adaptation. They have been innovatively adapting to climate change and related issues for a long time. They are also affected first and worst by climate change due to widespread discrimination, promoted by histories of colonialism, white supremacy, domination of nature, and economic exploitation.  We want the racial/ethnic makeup of ASAP membership to be representative of the broader community of people who are — or could be — doing adaptation work.
  2. Members of ASAP have access to capacity-building resources that help them become effective adaptation professionals as well as advance their careers. We want all folks doing adaptation work to have access to those resources. 

Right now, the majority of our members identify as White, so we are not representing the full community of people doing adaptation work or reaching them with ASAP resources. We want to improve.  

ASAP calls out the specific categories of Black, Indigenous, and People of Color to acknowledge two truths:

  1. People of color in all racial and ethnic groups experience discrimination based on their race or ethnicity that translates to unequal access to opportunities such as formal education and awareness of or inclusion in specific social-professional spaces. This may correlate with a lower probability of becoming aware of, and being able to access, the benefits of ASAP membership. 
  2. ASAP is centered in North America, and within that it is centered in the United States. North America, and especially the United States, has perpetrated severe, longstanding injustices specifically against Black people and Indigenous peoples that have resulted in even less access to opportunity and even greater susceptibility to the impacts of climate change.

Learn More: Read ASAP’s Justice, Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion Statement