Harvard University Employee Resource Group (ERG) Definition
At the very core, all Employee Resource Groups (ERGs) will have:
- Financial and Executive support from the university via a Sponsoring Office
- Provide university-wide focus and representation
- Operate with a governance process in place
Additionally, to be a university recognized ERG, the group itself must serve to support a community that is a protected class as defined by the EEOC or a historically underrepresented/marginalized group both of which have had little to no representation in the formation of university policies, overall recruitment, and/or retention. These communities are groups with which the university wants to foster a deeper sense of community. ERGs will typically be formed around identifiers such as:
- Ability/Individuals with Disabilities
- Veteran Status
- Sex/Gender/Gender Identity
There may be other groups that wish to form that should be reviewed and considered on a case-by-case basis. Please see the “New University Recognized ERG Process” for additional information.
All other groups that may form at the university will be defined as a university affinity group. The “Employee Resource Group” title cannot be utilized by affinity groups unless an exception has been previously identified. Please contact Talent Acquisition & Diversity if you see a misuse of the “Employee Resource Group” title.
Mission & Objectives
The Harvard University Employee Resource Groups (ERGs) strive to promote equal opportunity, awareness, and understanding of Harvard’s rich and diverse community, centering on the experiences of staff and faculty from historically-marginalized groups. Our efforts foster an environment of excellence, inclusion, and equity.
ERGs have been formed by Harvard staff and faculty over the past decades through grassroots channels as an effort for individuals from marginalized groups to connect. The mission of the collective ERGs is to:
- Educate, raise awareness, and share information about issues that affect historically marginalized communities;
- Provide professional development, networking, and cultural appreciation opportunities;
- Improve diversity, equity, inclusion, and belonging; and
- Offer a forum in which staff/community concerns can be made known to the University.
Please join us! Our membership spans all Harvard schools and units, and all Harvard employees are welcome to participate across identity lines in allyship and support.