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Ethnicity, Nationality, Race, Identity, Culture & Heritage (E.N.R.I.C.H.)

Kat Marketplace Partner Sep 30, 2019

I was checking out the Atlassian Team Playbook Balanced Teams Diversity Assessment and noticed a reaction in myself when I saw the category called "race". In New Zealand in this context we would use "ethnicity".

In my mind "race" is an outdated term popular in Victorian times with connotations of ranking different groups of people. 

So I searched the differences between these terms to to try to understand why Atlassian uses "race" out of the ENRICH options.


  • What does "race" mean to you?
  • Is this term normal or out-dated to you?
  • What word would you use in diversity discussions?

1 comment

Sven Peters -K15t- Marketplace Partner Sep 30, 2019

Great you brought that up. I'm German and the term "race" was used in Nazi-Germany in connection with the Aryan race (master race)... so people here in Germany normally don't use the term in connection with humans anymore (the majority feel very offended when someone uses it). 

Interested to hear what @SGD or Aubrey Blanche says about it.

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SGD Atlassian Team Oct 01, 2019

Hi Kat! Here in the US we use "race" without flinching. It wouldn't be uncommon to hear someone say "we need to get better at talking about race and racism". Some  people here also distinguish between race and ethnicity. For example, we might call my race "white" or "Caucasian" and my ethnicity "Scotch-Irish". 

Really interesting to hear how people feel about this word in other countries. #TIL !

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Kat Marketplace Partner Oct 01, 2019

The term "white" is also very American to me.  In a discussion about diversity it seems absurd to group, for example, someone whose grandparents were all born in the US/NZ, a recent immigrant from Switzerland, and someone who moved to the US/NZ from Ireland as a child as a single group.

The closest we have in NZ are Ethnicity questions with the options of NZ European/Pakeha, European, Other etc - where the answer does not depend on your citizenship/nationality/Visa status.

These questions in NZ almost always allow people to pick 2 or more options as well.


What do you Aussie teammates think of the term "race"?


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