Equity, Diversity and Inclusion in the Canada Research Chair Program

Research reports published on Equity, Diversity & Inclusion in the Canada Research Chair Program 

The Equity & Inclusion Office in partnership with the UBC Vancouver Office of the Provost published two reports examining equity, diversity and inclusion for Canada Research Chairs (CRCs). These reports are a part of UBC’s CRC Equity, Diversity and Inclusion Action Plan and focus on two actions within that plan:

1. Addressing underrepresentation of persons with disabilities; and

2. Creating more equitable experiences for current and future chairholders at UBC.

Equitable Research Productivity Assessments 

The Equitable Research Productivity Assessments report examines the issues arising in hiring, retaining, and supporting scholars with disabilities into Canada Research Chairs and throughout academia, and provides some possible the solutions to these issues. The report highlights the systemic barriers, the bias, and the discrimination faced by disabled scholars. It discusses institutional ableism — for example, the report identifies how accommodations for disabilities can often be an afterthought, and the ways in which disabled people have to spend extra time and energy navigating spaces that aren’t accessible. It also expresses concerns about how the language used in hiring and selection processes can be discriminatory and overly medicalized.

The report calls for changes to the criteria for assessing scholarly activity and research productivity to recognize and celebrate excellent research contributions from a wider range of perspectives. Other recommendations include being more proactive about creating accessibility, educating staff and faculty, supporting the visibility of people with disabilities, and including people with disabilities on selection committees.

UBC’s Focus on Equity in Canada Research Chair Experiences 

UBC’s Focus on Equity in Canada Research Chair Experiences is a qualitative research report regarding barriers and inequities in UBC’s program for CRCs. Research findings shared in the report show that institutional and, more specifically, departmental environments play a critical role in shaping experiences and success of a chairholder.

To address these obstacles, the report recommends mentorship, networking opportunities, equitable negotiations and program transparency, as well as more support for chairholders and greater recognition of their achievements from within UBC and through the Canada Research Chair’s national program. These measures, it is argued, would create a more equitable environment and help all Canada Research Chairholders reach their full potential.

You can read the full reports and more about UBC’s Canada Research Chairs commitment to Equity, Diversity and Inclusion here.