LUX Statement on Bias Awareness and Responsibility

LUX Values - Summary Statement 

For Distribution

Last update:  4/7/21

The following statement was written by the Bias Awareness and Responsibility Committee, a group tasked with acknowledging and addressing issues of bias within the LUX platform currently in development. The Committee drafted this guiding statement and is now in the process of developing a series of recommendations to ensure that we are working towards the realization of our values.
 

LUX is a digital platform that enables users to search across Yale’s museum and library collections. This includes works of art, archives, scientific specimens, and other cultural heritage held at the University. Since its foundation in the early eighteenth century the University has encouraged, accumulated, and actively built its collections in the service of its educational mission. LUX supports this mission by making many of these objects and resources accessible, so that new knowledge and understanding can be built by those within and beyond Yale.

LUX exposes longstanding and deep bias within our acquisition activities, collection systems and descriptive practices. Some content, and the description of that content, is outmoded, racist, and culturally insensitive. Yale’s cultural heritage institutions commit to identifying and addressing these issues, and also to being transparent about documenting such processes. Individually and collectively, the institutions seek to treat users with respect, ensuring dignity is extended to all those who created, or are represented in, Yale’s collections. This includes numerous groups who historically have been marginalized and systemically silenced, whose perspectives, expertise, and authority will contribute to the direction of LUX’s future.

Please share any questions or comments about the work of the committee via the following Qualtrics Survey, or via email to Rob Sanderson (robert.sanderson@yale.edu) or Elizabeth Williams (elizabeth.j.williams@yale.edu).