Basic research centre for the study of discrimination opens at Aarhus BSS

What is discrimination? Why do we discriminate and what can we do to prevent discrimination? These are some of the central questions that a new centre of excellence at Aarhus BSS, Aarhus University will be aiming to answer and qualify in the coming years.

2020.08.21 | Ingrid Marie Fossum

The new basic research centre will be located in the university’s oldest building, building 1340. Photo: Aarhus BSS Communication and External Relations

The centre will be headed by Professor of Political Science Kasper Lippert-Rasmussen.

The name of the centre is CEPDISC (Centre for the Experimental-Philosophical Studies of Discrimination), it is located at the Department of Political Science and opens in August. The centre is headed by Professor of Political Science Kasper Lippert-Rasmussen, who has been studying discrimination for more than 10 years.

CEPDISC has been founded with the help of a DKK 62 million grant from the Danish National Research Foundation. For the next six years, the researchers will explore the moral, philosophical and ethical aspects of discrimination and conduct specific studies into how human beings perceive and approach discrimination.

“Hopefully our research will make people reflect on the concept of discrimination and what they find problematic about discrimination. It might also help them with ways to reduce the amount of discrimination in society,” says Centre Director Kasper Lippert-Rasmussen.

Kasper Lippert-Rasmussen has published a long list of articles in highly ranked journals and a number of books on discrimination. In April this year, he published his latest book entitled Making Sense of Affirmative Action (Oxford University Press, 2020).

CEPDISC will be part of the Department of Political Science at Aarhus BSS where the majority of the researchers at the centre are employed. In addition, the centre will draw on several international collaborations. These include an advisory board with researchers from institutions such as Harvard and the University of Oxford.

“A centre of excellence grant is large as well as long term. To receive such a grant will thus have a lasting and valuable impact on Aarhus BSS and our research environment. It will increase our exposure - not least internationally - and provide us with the financial means to attract top researchers who will form relations with the school’s researchers and increase our recruitment of new top researchers now and in the future,” says Vice-dean for Research Per Baltzer Overgaard.

Head of the Department of Political Science Peter Munk Christiansen is also delighted with the centre:

“The grant for the new centre is a recognition of the fact that within this academic field as well, the department measures up to the large and strong research environments abroad,” he says.

  • CEPDISC is short for “Centre for the Experimental-Philosophical Study of Discrimination” or “Center for Eksperimentel-Filosofiske Studier af Diskrimination”.
  • CEPDISC was recommended for a six-year centre establishment grant by the Danish National Research Foundation starting in August 2020.
  • The centre will be headed by Professor of Political Science Kasper Lippert-Rasmussen.
  • Other researchers affiliated with CEPDISC are Associate Professor Göran Duus-Otterström, Senior Associate Professor Marion Godman, Postdoc Ditte Marie Munch-Jurisic, Associate Professor Lasse Laustsen, Professor Michael Bang Petersen, Professor Kim Mannemar Sønderskov, Professor Lotte Thomsen and Associate Professor Fabio Wolkenstein.
  • CEPDISC will be the first to connect perspectives from ethics and political philosophy with insights from social psychology and political psychology.
  • Among other things, CEPDISC will conduct studies using register data and experiments with population-based experiments.
  • Read more on the centre’s website

Contact information:
Kasper Lippert-Rasmussen
Professor of Political Science, Aarhus BSS
Aarhus University
M: 60 65 87 8
E: lippert@ps.au.dk

Ceremony / opening