California Law Review (CLR) is deeply committed to diversity, both in its membership and its scholarship. CLR defines diversity as a “variety of personal experiences, values, and worldviews that arise from differences of culture and circumstance.”1 Such experiences include, but are not limited to: race, ethnicity, gender, age, religion, language, abilities/disabilities, sexual orientation, socioeconomic status, geographic region, national origin, immigration status, family status, personal/family education level, political beliefs, and prior or current military service.
A diverse membership is integral to CLR’s achievement of excellence. Because personal experiences and identity shape how individuals look at the world, diversity in law review membership translates into a broader and more complex exchange of ideas and richer scholarship. Additionally, diverse groups of students select a range of different articles for publication, thereby increasing the variety and breadth of scholarship circulating within the legal academy. A diverse membership also strengthens learning and mentorship opportunities within CLR, leading to a better legal education and experience for student members. Finally, because law review membership is a stepping stone in the legal profession, striving for diversity ensures that law reviews like CLR—and by extension, other influential organizations—remain accessible to all rather than replicating systemic social inequalities.
Throughout the years, CLR has undertaken numerous diversity initiatives. These include:
- • Creating a Diversity Editor (DE) position and integrating the DE into its Executive Committee;
- • Modifying the Write-On to include comprehensive and skills-based assessments, such as personal statements and editing packets;
- • Collecting and maintaining demographic information for Write-On participants and CLR members;
- • Establishing a Diversity Committee to plan events and assess CLR’s diversity-related policies and programs;
- • Integrating diversity workshops into CLR’s orientation and professional skills training; and
- • Partnering with other Berkeley Law student organizations to co-sponsor events that promote diversity in the legal academy.
Katherine S. Mangan, "In Search of Diversity on Law Reviews," The Chroncle of Higher Education (September 5, 2003)
Donna Maeda, Imperial Identities: Reproductions of Whiteness at the California Law Review
1. University of California Diversity Statement, available at http://www.ucop.edu/ucophome/coordrev/policy/PP063006DiversityStatement.pdf.