The future of DEI – courageous inclusion with Alison France


Hi, my name’s Dr Paul Brewerton, the strengths guy, Founder and Chair of Strengthscope, Doctor of Organisational Psychology. Today’s podversation is with Alison Pacifico-France (and I’ve been saying Alison France for so so many years but you just got married, congratulations to you both!).

Alison is Founder of OD consultancy Evosis, a highly experienced D&I professional who has worked with many organisations to help them create more inclusive and more diverse cultures. Alison’s vision is…wait for it…”To evolve the human race so that everyone inherently values, and has the skill, to be truly inclusive of each other’s diversity.” Wow.


So in today’s podversation, we’re going to talk about courageous inclusion, what it means, why Alison coined the term, how she works with organisations on DEI topics and how we at Strengthscope have benefited directly from that, as well as talking through some handy tools and models that are well worth looking into if this is an area that you’re interested in. And of course we’ll be looking at the link with strengths and how DEI and strengths can dovetail, as Alison has found in many of the programmes she’s run.

Hi and welcome to the show!


Alison’s blogs mentioned in the podversation – courageous inclusion – inclusion eats diversity for breakfast


Useful DEI models – Antiracist model Deloitte models, I particularly use the inclusion culture maturity model (point 8) a lot to help pinpoint where companies are and give them an idea of the direction they are travelling in The. Gardenswartz and Rowe 4 layers of diversity – this is an adapted version. Great to help think about how we all have complex identities and which aspects of ourselves become privileged or marginalised by our societies.  This version is a little better than the original, however it still isn’t complete as it doesn’t include mental health and neurodiversity (unless you count them under physical ability).  As with all models, it’s a good place to start a conversation.


Useful DEI videos – John Amaechi, the best description of privilege (especially white privilege) and disadvantage I’ve come across in just 2.5 minutes. It had a real impact when I shared it with the Strengthscope team too \ –   Another great illustration of a complex concept – microaggressions in just 4.5 minutes at work in just 4 minutes Great video, although they use LGBTQ community – I prefer communities to highlight the differences between groups within our Pride umbrella.


Examples of the privilege walk we discussed – Dublin


Examples of the privilege walk activity

Do adapt the questions to the country so they are understandable, although be careful not to add in further bias!

Because we ran ours virtually, we had people tally up their steps forward and back to create a final score which was added with their name to a continuum line posted on a virtual collaboration tool (mural)


Thank you Alison…if people want to get in touch with you, what’s the best way to do it – Linkedin – Website


More information about evosis DEI development programmes – includes the case study from the programme we ran with evosis (to be launched August 2021)