Rachel Arnett is an Assistant Professor of Management at the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania. She is in the Organizational Behavior subgroup with the Management Department and specializes in diversity, identity, inclusion, intergroup relations, and intersectionality. In 2022, she was named by Poets & Quants as one of the Best 40-Under-40 MBA Professors.
Rachel’s research investigates pathways to developing diversity, equity, and inclusion as well as relationships across differences, including how individuals navigate identity-based differences, push for social change, confront bias and discrimination, engage in allyship behaviors, and leverage identities and role models to attain leadership success. In one stream of research, she examines when, why, and how individuals express or conceal identity-based differences (e.g., race, nationality, social class) when interacting with people who differ from themselves, and the consequences for employees’ psychological, interpersonal, and professional outcomes. Another research stream illuminates how organizational DEI goals can be advanced by better leveraging the benefits and counteracting the risks that individuals associate with diversity, equity, and inclusion. This includes understanding the important role of psychological safety for advancing DEI. A third line of work tests how individuals can overcome challenges associated with confronting bias and engaging in effective allyship. Finally, using an intersectional lens, she explores how the interplay between gender, race, and social class influence individuals’ role models and leadership trajectories.
Rachel conducts her research using a combination of laboratory experiments, surveys, and qualitative data. She has partnered with multiple organizations who are interested in advancing DEI, including conducting field experiments, employee surveys, and in-depth interviews.
Rachel completed her doctoral training in Harvard University’s Organizational Behavior program, an interdisciplinary program between Harvard Business School and Harvard’s Social Psychology department. Before Harvard, she was a Research Assistant in New York University’s Social Psychology department and a Senior Brand Strategist in the advertising industry. She received her Bachelor of Arts from the University of Pennsylvania.