The Laboratory for Ethnic and Race Equity (LAESER) at UT Austin, directed by Dr. Marcelo Paixão (AADS/LLILAS), is an academic space engaged in the development of teaching, research, and extension studies aimed at performing activities in the study field of ethnic-racial relations and discrimination within the Brazilian social structure and in other countries assailed by such problems.
LAESER was created in 2006 at the Federal University of Rio de Janeiro (UFRJ), Brazil, as an academic space engaged in the promotion of social, racial, and gender equality in Brazil.
At UT Austin, LAESER activities embrace Latin America, the United States, and other regions of the world. The lab is a collaborative academic space that works to foster research, teaching, and training activities in ethnic and racial inequality and development using mixed methods. LAESER works with the ethical-normative perspective that scientific knowledge applied to the Social Sciences can be an important instrument in strengthening democracy, human rights, and equality of rights and opportunities for the promotion of social justice for all human beings.
LAESER’s specific area of competence is in the study of ethnic-racial relations, primarily those that involve the relation of the black population, or Afro-descendants, with the rest of the composition of society; as well as the situations regarding social and human rights issues, violence, impoverishment, and dismay these contingents experience. LAESER, in its different activity areas, makes systematic use of the social statistics and demographic information banks, aiming at an objective understanding of the evolution of the Brazilian socio-racial inequalities.