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Claude Steele

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5 out of 5

Social Psychologist & Stereotype Expert

Social Psychologist & Stereotype Expert

Travels From Travels From:
Berkeley, CA, USA
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Claude Steele Biography

Claude M. Steele is an American social psychologist and a Professor of Psychology at Stanford University.

He is best known for his work on stereotype threat and its application to minority student academic performance. His earlier work dealt with research on the self (e.g., self-image, self-affirmation) as well as the role of self-regulation in addictive behaviors. In 2010, he released his book, Whistling Vivaldi and Other Clues to How Stereotypes Affect Us, summarizing years of research on stereotype threat and the underperformance of minority students in higher education.

He holds B.A. in Psychology from Hiram College, an M.A. in Social Psychology from Ohio State University, and a Ph.D. in Social Psychology and Statistical Psychology from Ohio State University.

He is elected to the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, the National Academy of Sciences, the National Science Board, the National Academy of Education, and the American Philosophical Society.

He currently serves on the board of the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation, the board of Scripps College, and the SFJazz board. He is just retired by term limit from the Russell Sage Foundation Board of Directors, after being Chair for ten years. Professor Steele is a Fellow for both the American Institutes for Research and the American Academy of Political and Social Science, and serves on the Advisory Council of the MIT Media Lab.

He has served in several major academic leadership positions as the Executive Vice Chancellor and Provost at UC Berkeley, the I. James Quillen Dean for the School of Education at Stanford University, and as the 21st Provost of Columbia University. Past roles also include serving as the President of the Society for Personality and Social Psychology, as the President of the Western Psychological Association, and as a member of the Board of Directors of the American Psychological Society.

Professor Steele holds Honorary Doctorates from Yale University, Northwestern University, University of Chicago, University of Michigan, DePaul University and Claremont Graduate University.

In 2020 he received the Legacy Award from the Society for Personality and Social Psychology (SPSP). The SPSP Legacy honors luminary figures whose seminal career contributions have shaped the field.

Claude Steele Speaking Topics

  • Building trust, showing up, and creating ‘beloved communities’

    How can we build successfully diverse universities in which people feel they can contribute from the standpoint of their backgrounds and identities, and yet not be discriminated against based on those backgrounds and identities?

    Claude Steele, professor of psychology at Stanford University, shares early insights from his forthcoming book in a talk he calls “Churn: Life in the Increasingly Diverse World of Higher Education and How to Make It Work.”

    The author of Whistling Vivaldi: How Stereotypes Affect Us and What We Can Do, Dr. Steele is renowned for his research on stereotype threat and its application to the academic performance of underrepresented students.

  • Churn and the Tension Between Remembering and Forgetting

    Dr. Steele will discuss his concept: when two people, or groups of people, each with their contingencies of identity, are attempting to communicate across differences, there is a lot going on cognitively, affectively, and emotionally in these situations.

    “Here we have an American conversation… these pressures are coming from our history, the roles our history has assigned us, and the stereotypes that history has created to justify the roles that it has assigned us. We can think of things from a strictly colorblind frame of mind, that history is in the past… but as Faulkner famously said, the past is never dead, it’s not even past. We can feel this in a moment-to-moment way when we are interacting with each other. That history and its stereotypes and the pressures and tensions it creates can make it very difficult for us to trust each other.”

    Without prior work done to build trust, Steele observes,

    “…we’re left with these pressures to contend with in our efforts to relate to each other, to be part of a successfully diverse community in an institution or in a classroom. These kinds of pressures can enter the picture … a sort of tension between remembering and forgetting. ‘Do I remember how my group is seen and treated in society … and use that to interpret what’s happening to me in this immediate situation? Or do I just forget that, and trust the situation?’ That kind of tension is what I mean with the term churn.”

    Churn is the worry about how one’s identity, in light of all of this context, plays out in the subjective experience of a diverse situation. To Steele, this “identity churn” is a “huge part” of the challenge of diversity, and trust is the critical issue in the functioning of our institutions.

Claude Steele Videos

  • The Science of Diverse Community
  • Claude Steele on the Challenges of Multi-Cultural Societies - #38 ...
  • Stereotype Threat

Claude Steele Books

  • Whistling Vivaldi: How Stereotypes Affect Us and What We Can Do (Issues of Our Time)
    Whistling Vivaldi: How Stereotypes Affect Us and What We Can Do (Issues of Our Time)
  • Whistling Vivaldi: And Other Clues to How Stereotypes Affect Us (Issues of Our Time) [Hardcover] [2010] (Author) Claude M. Steele
    Whistling Vivaldi: And Other Clues to How Stereotypes Affect Us (Issues of Our Time) [Hardcover] [2010] (Author) Claude M. Steele

Speaker Lists Featuring Claude Steele

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  • What topics does Claude Steele speak about?

    Claude Steele is a keynote speaker and industry expert whose speaking topics include Alcoholism and Drug Abuse, Black History, Culture, Diversity, Education, Health, Mental Health, Parenting, Personal Growth, Relationships, Science and Technology, Virtual Speakers.
  • Where does Claude Steele travel from?

    Claude Steele generally travels from Berkeley, CA, USA, but can be booked for private corporate events, personal appearances, keynote speeches, or other performances. For more details, please contact an AAE Booking agent.
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Claude Steele is a keynote speaker and industry expert who speaks on a wide range of topics such as Building trust, showing up, and creating ‘beloved communities’ and Churn and the Tension Between Remembering and Forgetting. The estimated speaking fee range to book Claude Steele for your event is $5,000 - $10,000. Claude Steele generally travels from Berkeley, CA, USA and can be booked for (private) corporate events, personal appearances, keynote speeches, or other performances. Similar motivational celebrity speakers are Nikki Giovanni, Dorothy Roberts, Clayborne Carson, Liz Dozier and Bakari Sellers. Contact All American Speakers for ratings, reviews, videos and information on scheduling Claude Steele for an upcoming live or virtual event.

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