A Statewide Conversation About Race

We have been working with Advancing Oklahoma on a landmark study that digs into how Oklahomans view the issue of race, and the impact this has on communities and workplaces. The results show, depending upon race and ethnicity, that communities and workplaces are viewed very differently indeed.


Oklahomans are treated differently based upon their race

Screen Shot 2021-07-21 at 8.52.36 AM


Over half (56%) of Oklahomans believe that people are treated differently in this state based upon their race or ethnicity. If we pick apart this data point by age group, the vast majority of 18-34 year-olds - 76% - agree that the color of your skin impacts how you're treated. This belief lessens as Oklahomans get older.


Most Black Oklahomans Have Directly Experienced Racism

Screen Shot 2021-07-21 at 8.55.05 AM


One of the most sobering findings of the study is how pervasive experiences with racism are in this state. 81% of Black Oklahomans have experienced racism aimed directly at themselves. That's just 19% short of all Black Oklahomans being subject to racism in some form. That's huge, depressing, and unfortunately, a fact.


The optics of racism in this state are pretty significant too - 58% of all Oklahomans have witnessed racism aimed at a friend, family member, or colleague. 


Black Oklahomans Experience Workplaces Very Differently to White

Screen Shot 2021-07-21 at 8.54.19 AM


While most Oklahomans believe their workplaces to be diverse environments, and 68% state that DEI (diversity, equity, and inclusion) is a value, the experiences of Black Oklahomans differ dramatically from white.


  • Only 56% of Black Oklahomans are happy at work, compared to 80% of white Oklahomans.
  • Black Oklahomans are also significantly less likely to:
    • Feel empowered
    • Feel like they have a voice
    • Indicate people value their opinions
    • Feel supported

So, while DEI may very well be a value in the workplace, there is a wide and significant difference between the experiences of white and Black Oklahomans.


What Do We Do With This Information?


The mission of Advancing Oklahoma is to encourage statewide conversations about race, and that's exactly what we want the data to do. We want you to look at the data and absorb it. Maybe discuss what stands out to you with a buddy, family member, or colleague. 


Be sure to head over here if you want to learn more about Advancing Oklahoma, and check out our presentation for the research session while you're there.


About the Study


  • Online study with Oklahomans.
  • 547 Oklahomans participated yielding a margin of error of +/- 4.13% at the 95% confidence level.
  • The study was designed by Evolve Research with input from Advancing Oklahoma.



Posted by EvolveKev

Kevin is all about research. Qualitative, quantitative, UX, you name it. When he's not researching, he's to be found laying down beats in his studio and hanging out with his dogs (and girlfriend). Woof.

Topics: Research