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The Government of Canada and the Canada Research Chairs Program (CRCP) are committed to excellence in research and research training for the benefit of Canadians. McMaster University shares this commitment. Achieving a more equitable, diverse and inclusive Canadian research enterprise is essential to creating the excellent, innovative and impactful research necessary to seize opportunities and for responding to global challenges. For more information, please see the CRCP’s Equity, Diversity and Inclusion Requirements and Practices and 2019 Addendum to the 2006 Canadian Human Rights Settlement Agreement.

McMaster’s Commitment to Equity, Diversity and Inclusion

McMaster University is committed to building a diverse and inclusive community, where the rights of all individuals and groups are protected and all members feel safe, valued, empowered and respected for their contributions to the shared purposes of the University: research and education excellence. Inclusion occurs when systems and structures facilitate full participation by all community members and where members are treated equitably for their contributions. Employment Equity is a key part of our progress towards inclusivity in the employment relationship, and is an ongoing process that identifies, addresses and mitigates barriers in employment policies, practices and procedures.

Strategy for raising awareness within the institution

Employment equity recruitment statement

McMaster’s equity targets and gaps for each of the four designated groups

Governance plan for approval of the institutional action plan

Monitoring, addressing and reporting concerns related to equity, diversity & inclusion

McMaster’s policies that govern the staffing of Canada Research Chair positions

Canada Research Chair Program utilization spreadsheet

Advertisements and transparency statements for all active chair positions

Archived CRCP job postings

McMaster’s equity, diversity and inclusion action plan

Annual equity, diversity and inclusion progress report

Contact information

Strategy for raising awareness within the institution

  • McMaster is committed to building a diverse community and has put in place the requisite resources and programming to enhance awareness of equity, diversity and inclusion. We have undertaken a number of initiatives to raise awareness of our commitment to and the benefits of equity, diversity and inclusion, which relate both to the Canada Research Chairs Program (CRCP) and the broader research enterprise:

    a) Confirm McMaster’s commitment to Employment Equity and to identify, address and mitigate systemic discrimination in employment policies, practices and procedures;

    b) Establish the responsibility, with respect to Employment Equity, of each person in a position to make or influence employment decisions at McMaster University;

    c) Remedy the effects of any past discrimination through the development and implementation of Special Measures and Accommodation of differences; and,

    d) Set attainable goals and timeframes to achieve a representative and engaged workforce that reflects the diversity of the local community, and encourage understanding and mutual respect for the dignity and contributions of every person representative of the diversity of the local community.

    • McMaster has an Equity and Inclusion Office  (EIO) which sits within the Office of the Vice-Provost Equity. The EIO works with campus and community partners to ensure that McMaster is a place where all students, staff and faculty are treated equitably and respectfully in all areas of campus life.
    • The Office of the Provost, Human Resources, the Equity & Inclusion Office and other equity-seeking groups and individuals, collaborate to deliver Diversity and Equity training for staff, faculty and students at McMaster. All senior leaders, hiring managers, selection committee members involved in the hiring process, staff and faculty are strongly encouraged to complete diversity and equity training. All personnel involved in the selection of Canada Research Chairs are required to attend training on unconscious bias.
    • To advance employment equity programming at McMaster, an Employment Equity Working Committee was assembled in the summer of 2016 to develop a centralized framework for employment equity. An employment equity census was also undertaken in 2016.  The purpose of the census was threefold:
      • To understand the current composition of our workforce including those involved in research;
      • To identify our areas of greatest need; and
      • To track our progress in working towards an equitable workplace.
    • McMaster’s Employment Equity Report shares immediate and longer-term recommendations emerging from the Working Committee and presents data from the University’s employment equity census. We recognize however that employment equity is about more than numbers. Having a representative workforce becomes meaningful only when the environment encourages inclusivity and fosters success for all groups. As stated in the Report, McMaster recognizes that employment equity is realized as a collection of small changes to attitudes and practices; it is, by its nature, an iterative process. It is also a shared responsibility. Working together to promote employment equity, we will succeed in developing potential, strengthening our community, and multiplying the perspectives from which to answer the most challenging questions facing our world.
    • The University’s Employment Equity website provides information and tools including a description of McMaster’s Employment Equity Framework, and details the process used for the employment equity census and access to training.  Diversity and Equity training is a key component of diverse recruitment, promotion and retention.
    • To further support our commitment to equity, diversity and inclusion, McMaster has established a new position of Associate Vice-President, Equity and Inclusion. Working in collaboration with the Vice-Provost, Faculty, and Human Resources, the Associate Vice-President, Equity and Inclusion, plays a central role in education and awareness-raising initiatives, with particular attention to faculty.  Together these positions ensure a visible presence for and sustained focus on these issues and support the development and implementation of enhanced recruitment and retention policies.  As maintaining equity is a shared responsibility, these positions work with senior administration to coordinate and monitor the effectiveness of training, workshops, networking events, and mentoring programs designed to ensure equitable and inclusive hiring, career progression, recognition and retention practices and supports across the career lifespan.
    • McMaster has revised its policy on Recruitment and Selection of Faculty Members to further ensure faculty recruitment and selection processes embody the principles of equity, diversity and transparency, and encourage the participation of candidates representing the four designated groups.
    • McMaster has developed staff hiring guidelines, which detail the benefit of and need for employment equity. The McMaster Staff Hiring Guidelines consolidate the necessary staff hiring tools into one central resource to provide a better understanding of the hiring process, outline best practices in selecting candidates, and provide the resources for additional assistance. The Guidelines outline recruitment and selection processes at McMaster, including roles and responsibilities of all parties involved in the hiring process. The Guidelines also clearly speak to “recruiting for diversity” and provide education on understanding diversity, equity and inclusion at McMaster and challenging misconceptions.  They also raise awareness of unconscious assumptions and rational bias, explain employment laws, the Ontario Human Rights Code and the need for accommodation, and provide tools, including examples of how to provide accommodation and best practices for equitable recruiting.  The Guidelines are provided to all Faculties and Departments who are engaged in recruiting.  A Faculty Hiring Handbook is also in development and will embrace these same principles.  This Handbook will relate to all Faculty hiring, including for the CRCP.

Employment Equity Recruitment Statement

McMaster University is located on the traditional territories of the Haudenosaunee and Mississauga Nations and, within the lands protected by the “Dish With One Spoon” wampum agreement.

In keeping with its Statement on Building an Inclusive Community with a Shared Purpose, McMaster University strives to embody the values of respect, collaboration and diversity, and has a strong commitment to employment equity. The diversity of our workforce is at the core of our innovation and creativity and strengthens our research and teaching excellence. The University seeks qualified candidates who share our commitment to equity, diversity and inclusion. While all qualified candidates are invited to apply, we particularly welcome applications from women, persons with disabilities, First Nations, Métis and Inuit peoples, members of visible minorities, and LGBTQ+ persons.

McMaster’s Equity Targets and Gaps for Each of the Four Designated Groups

The CRCP has established representational goals (referred to as “targets” by the Tri-agency) across four federally designated groups (FDGs): Indigenous (First Nations, Métis, and Inuit) peoples, members of racialized communities (referred to as “visible minorities” by the federal government), women, and persons with disabilities. While members of sexual orientation and gender identity (SOGI) minoritized groups (i.e., 2SLGBTQ+ communities) are equity-deserving groups who also experience workplace barriers in higher education, the federal government does not collect comparable population statistics for these communities.

Tri-agency targets as of December 2020 are shown on the CRCP’s Program Statistics website. McMaster’s CRCP utilization spreadsheet outlines how many chair allocations the University has, how many are filled and by which Chairholders (with their term start and end dates), type of flex moves used and which allocations are available. All universities must submit to the CRCP, an annual program report against CRC FDG representation goals, for posting on the CRCP website. McMaster’s latest report submitted is the 2021 Institutional EDI Action Plan and EDI Stipend Report.

McMaster has enhanced efforts to attract and retain a diversity of high-quality researchers including CRC Chairholders. As a result of these efforts, we can report that McMaster is meeting the representational goals set by the CRCP. McMaster is committed to reflecting true equity (equality of opportunity and outcome) beyond quantitative compositional diversity goals and in qualitative measures of attitudes, practices, experiences, and climate.

McMaster has consistently met the targets set by the CRCP for the representation of racialized chairholders since the first reporting cycle in 2009 and for the representation of women among chairholders since the 2012-2014 reporting cycle. As of June 1, 2021, 31 of our CRC Chairholders identify as women, against an internal goal of at least 21 according to the CRCP representational target of 31% of institutional Chairholders, and 20 Chairholders identify as members of racialized communities, against an internal goal of at least 10 according to the CRCP representational target of 15% of institutional Chairholders. McMaster can report that the proportions of Chairholders who identify as Indigenous Peoples and those who identify as disabled meet the CRCP representational targets of 4% and 1% of Chairholders, respectively. Given the small number of Chairholders who identify as Indigenous Peoples (<5) and who identify as persons with disabilities (<5), McMaster cannot report the actual numbers to protect the identities of Chairholders per privacy legislation. McMaster recognizes that the representational targets set for Indigenous Peoples and persons with disabilities are low and that there are potential barriers and complexities associated with self-identification among these populations. McMaster is committed to employing innovative strategies, in consultation with these communities to strengthen the research community comprising CRC and other Chairholders, particularly from underrepresented FDGs.

In response to the CRCP’s requirements to meet the recently established 2029 Equity targets, McMaster developed our 2021-2029 equity target plan. The current representation of individuals from the four designated groups within active chairs of June 1, 2021 and the equity targets by Tier for the December 2022 and projected targets for future deadlines can be found here.

Governance Plan for Approval of the Institutional Action Plan

Development of McMaster’s CRC Equity, Diversity and Inclusion Action Plan was led by a working group consisting of representatives from the Office of the Vice-President, Research, the Office of the Provost, Human Resources, and several Faculties. The working group included the University’s Employment Equity Specialist, representatives of the designated groups, and later, the Associate Vice-President, Equity and Inclusion. The working group developed an initial draft of the Action Plan which was circulated for review and input to McMaster’s Associate Deans, Research, and select Canada Research Chairholders who had self-identified as members of one or more of the four designated groups. A revised Action Plan, which incorporated the feedback received, was presented by the Vice-President, Research, to McMaster’s President and Vice-Presidents, who are responsible for ensuring employment policies, practices and procedures are consistent with the University’s Employment Equity Framework, and for the overall achievement of Employment Equity in their respective divisions. McMaster’s President and Vice-Presidents provided final approval of the Plan.

Monitoring, Addressing and Reporting Concerns Related to Equity, Diversity & Inclusion

Concerns related to equity, diversity and inclusion are addressed through McMaster’s Human Rights and Dispute Resolution Program, a confidential program managed by the Equity and Inclusion Office (EIO) within the Office of the Associate Vice-President, Equity and Inclusion. This program deals with discrimination, sexual harassment and general harassment complaints. Processes are complainant driven, confidential and available to all members of the McMaster community. EIO administers the University’s Policy on Discrimination and Harassment. As outlined on McMaster’s Human Rights and Dispute Resolution Program website, complainants have the option of 1) raising a concern without filing a complaint about comments and/or conduct they have experienced that they feel may be in breach of the Policy, 2) making an informal complaint and working with the EIO to resolve it, 3) filing a formal complaint, which will result in a written Investigator Report, or 4) referring the matter to a formal Tribunal Hearing conducted by the Board-Senate Hearing Panel for Discrimination, Harassment and Sexual Harassment.

The EIO publishes an annual report on all harassment and discrimination consultation and complaints related to human rights grounds, which is provided to the senior management, including the President, Provost, Senate and Board of Directors. The EIO management team regularly assesses consultations and complaints received regarding equity, diversity and inclusion incidents and trends, as these could signal the presence of deeper organizational or cultural issues. The EIO engages relevant senior administrators to initiate university-led processes, such as a systemic review or climate study, to better understand and remediate the situation.

McMaster’s Policies that Govern the Staffing of Canada Research Chair Positions

For all new nominatios, McMaster conforms to the CRCP’s Requirements for recruiting and nominating Canada Research Chairs. In addition, as Canada Research Chairs are faculty appointments they are governed by McMaster’s Faculty Policies.

These include:

Canada Research Chair Program Utilization Spreadsheet

McMaster’s CRCP utilization spreadsheet outlines how many chair allocations the University has, how many are filled and by which Chairholders (with their term start and end dates), type of flex moves used and which allocations are available.

Advertisements and Transparency Statements for all Active Chair Positions

External Recruitment:

Tier 2 CRC in the Faculty of Health Sciences – Obstetrics and Gynecology – March 25, 2021

Tier 1 CRC in the Faculty of Health Sciences – Brain Research – December 16, 2020; last revised Feb 22, 2021

Tier 1 CRC in Mathematical Analysis and Applications – October 7, 2020

Tier 2 CRC in the Faculty of Engineering #33473 – July 31, 2020 – reposted October 7, 2020

Internal Recruitment:

Tier 1 CRCs in the Faculty of Health Sciences – open only to members of four designated groups – May 4, 2021

Tier 1 CRC in the Faculty of Health Sciences – Nutrition and Gastrointestinal Diseases – March 15, 2021

Transparency Statement:

Tier 1 CRC in Infectious Diseases Research using emergency retention mechanism – Transparency statement – June 29, 2021

Archived CRCP Job Postings

Tier 1 CRC in Obesity – July 2017

Tier 1 CRC in History of Analytic Philosophy with particular attention to Bertrand Russell’s contribution to this history – October 22, 2018

Tier 2 CRCs in the Faculty of Health Sciences – November 29, 2018

Tier 2 CRC in Stem Cell Research – December 21, 2018

Tier 2 CRC in mental health using emergency retention mechanism – transparency statement – Feb 5, 2019

Tier 2 CRC in Economics – Feb 8, 2019

Tier 2 CRCs in the Faculty of Science – June 28, 2019

Tier 2 CRCs in the Faculty of Health Sciences – July 19, 2019

Tier 1 CRCs in the Faculty of Engineering (internal) – July 25, 2019

Tier 2 CRCs in the Faculty of Engineering (internal) – July 25, 2019

Tier 1 CRCs in the Faculty of Engineering (external) – July 26, 2019

Tier 2 CRCs in the Faculty of Engineering (external) – July 26, 2019

Tier 2 CRC in the Faculty of Engineering – July 20, 2020

Tier 1 CRC in the Faculty of Engineering – July 20, 2020

Tier 2 CRCs in the Faculty of Science – July 6, 2020

Tier 1 CRC in Addictions Research using emergency retention mechanism – Transparency Statement – July 29, 2020

Tier 2 CRC in the Faculty of Health Sciences – Addictions Research – October 9, 2020

Tier 1 CRC in the Faculty of Health Sciences – October 9, 2020

Tier 2 CRCs in the Faculty of Health Sciences – October 9, 2020

Tier 2 CRCs in the Faculty of Health Sciences – Data Science – December 6, 2019; revised January 28, 2020

McMaster’s Equity, Diversity and Inclusion Action Plan

McMaster’s Equity, Diversity and Inclusion Action Plan outlines the efforts that we have already undertaken, as well as our planned initiatives, to build a diverse and inclusive community, and encourage of the participation of members of underrepresented groups in the Canada Research Chairs program.

Annual Equity, Diversity and Inclusion Progress Report

Contact Information

For questions related to equity and diversity within the CRC Program:

Kathy Charters
Assistant Vice-President, Research Administration
Office of the Vice-President, Research
McMaster University
905-525-9140 Ext. 23735; chartersk@mcmaster.ca

For questions related to equity and diversity within the broader McMaster community:

Arig al-Shaibah
Associate Vice-President, Equity and Inclusion
Equity and Inclusion Office
McMaster University
905-525-9140 Ext. 27581;

May-Marie Duwai-Sowa
Employment Equity Specialist
Human Resource Services, Organizational Development
McMaster University
905-525-9140 ext. 24395; duwaisom@mcmaster.ca