Reference List About Implicit and Unconscious Bias

Ana Maria Munar, Florence Villeseche, Cecilie Dam Wiedemann

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    The compilation of this reference list is one of the initiatives of the action plan developed by the Council for Diversity and Inclusion at Copenhagen Business School (CBS). This reference list is the first in a series of efforts initiated by this Council to develop an academic resource pool and knowledge base on diversity- and inclusion-related topics. An implicit and/or unconscious bias is a bias that we are unaware of and is therefore expressed unwillingly and unknowingly. As recent studies on implicit bias indicate “we now know that the operation of prejudice and stereotyping in social judgment and behavior does not require personal animus, hostility, or even awareness. In fact, prejudice is often ‘unconscious’ or ‘implicit’ – that is, unwitting, unintentional, and uncontrollable even among the most well-intentioned people. […] Prejudice also lives and thrives in the banal workings of normal, everyday human thought and activity” (Hardin and Banaji, 2013, pp. 13-14). Research also indicates that it is possible to implement procedures and strategic actions that help reduce implicit biases (Devine, Forscher, Austin, & Cox, 2012). Although extensive, this list does not include all existing academic work on the topic of implicit and unconscious bias. Our objective here has been to focus on publications that could be of relevance for higher education and research environments. This list takes its point of departure in the comprehensive literature review “Unconscious Bias in Higher Education” (Equality Challenge Unit, 2013) and expands and updates it with other references – including literature published up to July 2016. The list aims to be used as a working document for employees or students at Copenhagen Business School. Therefore, besides the references, it includes direct links to publications accessible through the CBS library website and/or specifications of where and how to access each publication. In addition, as part of this effort and in line with the task list of the Council for Diversity and Inclusion, the report “Gender and Leadership Practices at Copenhagen Business School” (Munar & Villesèche, 2016) features a section that provides an analysis of the views of the heads of department/the leadership group at CBS regarding the topic of implicit bias. This report can be accessed via the CBS open archives ( To reduce unconscious biases and their related discriminatory effects is a responsibility of all of us working at academic institutions. It is our hope that this literature list will contribute to raising awareness and providing inspiration to action.
    Original languageEnglish
    Place of PublicationFrederiksberg
    PublisherCopenhagen Business School, CBS
    Number of pages30
    ISBN (Print)9788799821020
    Publication statusPublished - 23 Sept 2016

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