The Common Read is part of Harris’ commitment to diversity and inclusion and Harris’ shared belief that it is essential that future policymakers be given the opportunity to gain an understanding of the lived experiences of people who have been marginalized. All incoming students are expected to participate in the Common Read

The main goal is simple – to have all incoming students collectively share in a single learning experience while gaining an appreciation for diverse backgrounds, perspectives, and individual stories that not only impacts how we work together as classmates, but how we view the world as future policymakers. As you read through the book, read with a critical lens and explore policy issues that come to light. The Common Read is carefully selected by our Orientation Leaders in consultation with the Diversity and Inclusion Office. The 2023 Common Read will be selected in spring 2023.

Common Read 2022: Invisible Women: Data Bias in a World Designed for Men

The Harris Common Read selection for the 2022 academic year was landmark, prize-winning, international bestselling examination of how a gender gap in data perpetuates bias and disadvantages women.

Data is fundamental to the modern world. From economic development, to healthcare, to education and public policy, we rely on numbers to allocate resources and make crucial decisions. But because so much data fails to take into account gender, because it treats men as the default and women as atypical, bias and discrimination are baked into our systems. And women pay tremendous costs for this bias, in time, money, and often with their lives.

Celebrated feminist advocate Caroline Criado Perez investigates shocking root cause of gender inequality and research in Invisible Women, diving into women’s lives at home, the workplace, the public square, the doctor’s office, and more. Built on hundreds of studies in the US, the UK, and around the world, and written with energy, wit, and sparkling intelligence, this is a groundbreaking, unforgettable exposé that will change the way you look at the world.

Common Read Lecture

The Common Read Lecture will allow the Harris community to engage directly with the policy issues presented by the Common Read.  The program will feature a panel of scholars and practitioners who dive into the polis issues brought to light by this year's Common Read.

Polis Breakout: Common Read Discussion

In addition to the Common Read Lecture you will also engage in small group discussions on the Common Read along side your Polis. These breakouts will be a great opportunely to reflect upon the policy issues presented in the Common Read and dive into how it has influenced your view of the world as a future policymaker.

Past Year's Common Read

Caste: The Origins of Our Discontents (2021)

What the Eyes Don't See (2020)

Just Mercy (2019)

The South Side (2018)

High Rise Stories (2017)

A photo of Isabel Wilkerson.

Harris Public Policy Selects 2021-2022 Common Read

The Harris Common Read selection for the 2021-2022 academic year explores the unseen and often highly destructive American hierarchy that goes beyond the confines of race, class, gender, and other factors that have proven so successful at dividing us.