November 16, 2023

1:00 - 2:00 p.m. ET

Free, registration required to obtain login information

Laura Morgan Roberts
Associate Professor of Business Administration, University of Virginia

About the talk

Join us in conversation with one of the world’s most renowned voices bringing a positive organizational scholarship lens to topics of diversity, equity, and inclusion at work. Dr. Laura Morgan Roberts will discuss the headwinds slowing diversity, equity, and inclusion initiatives amid an uncertain economy and efforts to dismantle diversity programs through court rulings and legislation. Laura emphasizes that leaders will benefit from a focus on an overarching goal, that of creating four freedoms that are central to creating conditions necessary for all workers to flourish. Laura will share how to foster these four freedoms at work – the freedom to be, the freedom to become, the freedom to fade, and the freedom to fail – and how doing so can make organizations more welcoming and safer for everyone. Laura will share practical and powerful approaches, including encouraging individual allyship, implementing strengths-based development programs, and enabling flexible work, and how these approaches can more evenly distribute these four freedoms, reducing rates of disengagement and burnout, especially for those in marginalized groups.

Student Watch Party: Watch this streamed session together with other students for an in-person community experience followed by a structured discussion about how to put insights from Positive Links into practice. Registration for the Student Watch Party is included as an option when registering for this session of Positive Links.

To jump-start learning for this Positive Links session, read the Harvard Business Review article “Where Does DEI go from Here?” authored by Laura Morgan Roberts.

About Roberts

Laura Morgan Roberts, PhD, is the founder of The Alignment Quest Enterprise LLC and Frank M. Sands Sr. Associate Professor of Business Administration (with tenure) at the University of Virginia’s Darden School of Business. With family roots in Gary, Indiana and Washington, DC, Laura earned a BA in Psychology (highest distinction & Phi Beta Kappa) from the University of Virginia, and an MA and PhD in Organizational Psychology from the University of Michigan. She has served on the faculties of Harvard Business School, Antioch University, and Georgetown University. She has also taught courses in organizational behavior, psychology, negotiations, group dynamics, diversity, leadership, and career development as a faculty affiliate of the University of Michigan, the Wharton School of Finance, Tuck, Georgia State University, UCLA Anderson, Simmons School of Management, and AVT (Copenhagen). 

Laura Morgan Roberts researches the science of maximizing human potential in diverse organizations and communities. Her work on diversity, authenticity, and leadership development has been recognized by Thinkers50 (Talent Management Top 10 Thought Leader); LinkedIn (Top 10 Voice in Equity); ThinkList #Amplify; and the Academy of Management Organizational Behavior Award for Societal Impact. Laura has published research articles, teaching cases, and practitioner-oriented tools for strengths-based development, workplace equity, and inclusion. Her co-authored article, Toward a Racially Just Workplace, was featured among the top 12 articles in Harvard Business Review’s 100-year history. She has also co-edited three books: Race, Work and Leadership (2019 Axiom Business Book Award winner); Positive Organizing in a Global Society; and Exploring Positive Identities and Organizations. A frequent contributor to Harvard Business Review and the Academy of Management Review, she is regularly quoted in global media outlets. Laura serves on the Boards of The Partnership, Inc., and the Descendants of Enslaved Communities at the University of Virginia. 

Stay connected with Laura:

LinkedIn profile
Personal website
Twitter profile


Monica Worline, Faculty Director, Center for Positive Organizations

Positive Links Speaker Series Sponsors

The Center for Positive Organizations thanks Sanger Leadership Center, Tauber Institute for Global Operations, and Samuel Zell & Robert H. Lurie Institute for Entrepreneurial Studies for their support of the 2023-24 Positive Links Speaker Series.

Positive Links Series Promotional Partners

Additionally, we thank Ann Arbor SPARK and the Managerial and Organizational Cognition (MOC) Division of the Academy of Management for their Positive Links Speaker Series promotional partnerships.