Department of Political Science


The End of Affirmative Action: Impact on Diversity in US Universities

12 October 2023, 6:15 pm–7:30 pm

A university building appears in black and white on the left. On the right, someone holds up a graduate diploma

Online event. Part of the UCL Policy & Practice seminar series. Co-organised with UCL Centre on US Politics (CUSP).

This event is free.

Event Information

Open to







Eleanor Kingwell-Banham


In a momentous ruling earlier this year, the US Supreme Court struck down the constitutionality of affirmative action programs in college and university admissions.

How will the end of race-conscious preferences affect diversity, equity, and access to American higher education?

What role will alternative criteria play in shaping admissions policies and maintaining diverse student populations?

And what future challenges might confront efforts on campus to advance racial diversity or rectify the effects of past discrimination?

Join us for a discussion featuring three distinguished experts - Peter Arcidiacono (Duke University), Tiffany D. Atkins (University of Kentucky), and Mark Walsh (Education Week) - as they dissect the significance of the demise of affirmative action in US higher education.

Peter Arcidiacono is the William Henry Glasson Professor of Economics at Duke University and an expert on race and admissions in higher education. His research has investigated how affirmative action affects future earnings, college attendance rates, inter-racial interaction, and the match between student and schools. Arcidiacono served as an expert witness for Students for Fair Admissions, Inc. (SFFA) in SFFA v. Harvard.

Tiffany D. Atkins is assistant professor of Law at the University of Kentucky Rosenberg College of Law, where she teaches civil procedure, family law, and race and the law. Her scholarship centers on race, equity, and human rights. Atkins previously served as an associate professor of law at Elon University School of Law. She wrote an an amicus brief in Students for Fair Admissions, Inc. (SFFA) v. University of North Carolina.

Mark Walsh is a contributing writer to Education Week. He has covered education issues in the US Supreme Court and lower courts for more than 25 years. He previously served as Washington editor of Education Week, supervising coverage of federal education policy matters. Walsh also writes the Supreme Court Report column for the ABA Journal, the magazine of the American Bar Association.

The panel discussion will be chaired by Thomas Gift (UCL Political Science, and co-director of the UCL Centre on US Politics ((CUSP)) and followed by an audience Q&A.

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This event will be recorded and the video will be uploaded to our YouTube channel.

You can subscribe to our YouTube channel to be alerted when the recording is uploaded, or just check our channel after the 24 May, when the video should have been made available.


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UCL Centre on US Politics

Providing rigorous, thoughtful, and incisive analysis of crucial political developments in the United States and their implications for a global audience.

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