Update 2021: The update is limited to adding the midpoint attestation requirement.
Update 2022: The update is limited to adding gender minorities and updating the term “visible minorities” to “racialized individuals.”
Before reading the requirements below, note:
- These nomination and recruitment requirements must be followed by institutions when filling all new Tier 1 and Tier 2 Canada Research Chair allocations.
- The program will actively monitor to ensure these requirements are followed. In cases where the results of a monitoring exercise find that a recruitment process did not follow the requirements, the program reserves the right to withdraw a nomination, suspend future payments or terminate the award of an already active chair.
All Canada Research Chair positions must be filled using the following requirements for recruitment and nomination, which are based on the principles of openness, transparency and accountability. These outline the minimum requirements institutions must meet when filling a chair allocation. Institutions are encouraged to incorporate additional best practices within their processes.
1) Institutional accountability
- When filling a chair allocation, institutions must consider the need to meet and sustain their current equity and diversity targets for women and gender minorities persons with disabilities, Indigenous Peoples and racialized individuals (as applicable) within their allocation of chairs.
- These requirements apply to all nominations (other than renewals), whether the chair is used for internal recruitment (only open to existing faculty) or external recruitment (to attract new faculty), and in cases where an active Tier 2 chairholder is nominated to a Tier 1 Chair at the same institution.
- Before beginning the recruitment process, the institution must identify a senior-level university official, who will be responsible for ensuring the requirements have been followed and will attest to this by completing the program’s Institutional Attestation – Recruitment and Nomination Process on Convergence.
- The program will not accept nominations where the job posting and/or recruitment and nomination process do not follow the requirements.
- The Tri-agency Institutional Programs Secretariat (TIPS) reserves the right to ask institutions to provide, at any time within 48 months following a nomination submission, documentation that demonstrates the requirements were followed. See examples of documentation.
- The program will actively monitor to ensure these requirements are followed. In cases where the results of a monitoring exercise find the recruitment process did not follow the requirements, the program reserves the right to withdraw a nomination, suspend future payments or terminate the award of an already active chair.
2) Allocating chair positions
The institution must:
- take into account its equity targets and gaps when allocating a chair position to a department or faculty, when deciding which field to support with a chair and whether to limit the pool to internal candidates; and
- consider the potential for drawing a diverse pool of candidates when defining the targeted field of research, including that outlining a broader field of research is more likely to attract a more diverse pool of candidates.
3) Advertisements / job postings
The institution must:
- publicly advertise all chair positions on its public accountability web page for a minimum of 30 days prior to the closing of the competition (this applies to all new nominations, even those only open to existing faculty). All postings must be archived and publicly available for a minimum of three years from the date they are posted;
- on the same day they are posted online, email email@example.com the links to all job postings that advertise chair positions. The program will actively monitor all job postings to ensure that they meet the requirements outlined below; and
- in keeping with transparency, advertise a job posting no more than two years prior to the nomination being put forward to TIPS.
A job posting must:
- clearly state the date on which it has been posted online;
- clearly state the position is for a Canada Research Chair, and identify the field of research and tier level (Tier 1 or Tier 2);
- for a Tier 2 Chair, specifically refer to the program’s Tier 2 justification process, and not use language that is misleading or exclusionary regarding eligibility of a Tier 2 Chair (see Chair Position Postings for Tier 2 Chairs);
- if the institution requires the chair to have a PhD, stipulate that this is a requirement of the institution and not the program;
- include a statement that recognizes that life circumstances such as illness, disability, family and community responsibilities (e.g., maternity leave, parental leave, leaves due to illness, leaves due to caring for family members, or slowdowns due to chronic illness or disability) are expected to have an impact on a candidate’s record of research achievement, and that these impacts will be taken into careful consideration during the assessment process;
- encourage women and gender minorities, persons with disabilities, Indigenous Peoples and racialized individuals to apply;
- include the institution’s statement of commitment to equity, diversity and inclusion;
- include a statement on the institution’s accommodation policies and provide the contact information of someone who can support requests for accommodations (e.g., to accommodate candidates with hearing impairments or mobility restrictions, who are neurodiverse, etc.); and
- use inclusive, unbiased, ungendered language focused only on the qualifications and skills necessary for the job.
4) Search for candidates
Institutions must ensure:
- proactive efforts are made to identify a diverse pool of potential applicants, which may include:
- ensuring the targeted field of research is sufficiently broadly defined;
- advertising in targeted venues (professional societies and associations of underrepresented groups); or
- using recruitment firms/agencies;
- the selection criteria and assessment process are finalized prior to the process being undertaken, and are applied consistently and fairly to all candidates;
- the search and hiring committees’ evaluation processes and decisions are carefully documented at each stage of the process;
- conflicts of interest or perceived conflicts of interest within the process are managed in an open and transparent manner;
- the institution’s equity officer (or a committee member / institutional official identified as the equity, diversity and inclusion champion) is involved and consulted at all stages of the process (from proposal development to the final selection of the candidate); and
- self-identification data is collected from all applicants using best practices.
5) Nomination committee
A group of individuals (a committee, not a sole individual) must use a fair and objective recruitment and nomination process when making all decisions.
The recruitment and nomination committee must:
- have some representation from underrepresented populations, including a minimum of one individual from one of the underrepresented groups;
- include an equity and diversity officer (or a committee member / institutional official identified as the equity, diversity and inclusion champion);
- have received training regarding the potential negative impacts that unconscious bias, racism and discrimination can have on assessment and decision-making processes, and on the systemic barriers that impact the career paths of individuals from underrepresented groups;
- be aware of the institution’s commitment and strategy for meeting (or sustaining) its equity targets and any gaps; and
- use best practices to protect the privacy and personal information of all applicants (e.g., self-identification data; information related to life circumstances such as disability, illness and leaves; etc.).
6) Midpoint attestation
The midpoint attestation form must also be uploaded to the Convergence portal at the time of nomination via the Supporting Documents section.
7) Nomination decision
The recruitment and nomination committee must:
- fairly consider the impact of life circumstances that may have led to leaves or slowdowns on a potential candidate’s record when assessing research outputs;
- consider that some life circumstances can further contribute to career slowdowns outside of formal time away from work, such as the transition periods before and after a leave (e.g., pregnancy can, in some cases where there may be complications, impact productivity before the individual takes leave) or when individuals have disabilities that impact their daily lives (e.g., chronic pain, mental illness, neurodiversity, mobility impairments, etc.);
- ensure the assessment process does not undervalue scholarship or research that might be considered non-traditional or unconventional, based in Indigenous ways of knowing, outside the mainstream of the discipline, or focused on issues of gender, race or equity;
- ensure the need for workplace accommodations does not negatively impact a candidate’s assessment;
- review the final hiring decision (and challenge it, if necessary) to ensure unconscious bias or conflict of interest did not negatively impact the decision-making progress, and that it is aligned with the institution’s equity, diversity and inclusion action plan; and
- provide to the senior university official a written nomination committee report, signed by all committee members, attesting to how these requirements have been met.
Prior to submitting a nomination to TIPS, the designated senior university official must review the recruitment and nomination process, the corresponding documentation, and the nomination package to ensure:
- the requirements outlined herein have been followed;
- the nomination is aligned with both the program’s commitment to equity and diversity and the institution’s equity, diversity and inclusion action plan; and
- the level of institutional support (e.g., level of protected time for research, research stipend, mentoring, equipment, Canada Foundation for Innovation funding, etc.) being provided to the individual is fair and comparable to other chairholders at the institution (i.e., steps have been taken to avoid inequities in the level of support provided).
The designated senior university official must complete the Institutional Attestation – Recruitment and Nomination Process on Convergence when submitting the nomination. The midpoint attestation form, submitted previously by email during the recruitment process, must also be uploaded to the Convergence portal at the time of nomination, via the Supporting Documents section.
9) Emergency retention mechanism
Institutions may only use Canada Research Chair positions for emergency retention (i.e., where a position is offered without a competitive process to an individual to retain them within the institution) in very exceptional circumstances. The emergency retention mechanism may be used only by institutions that are meeting all of their equity targets, or in cases where the nomination contributes to meeting these targets.
In keeping with the principles of openness and transparency, the institution must publicly demonstrate the exceptional nature of the nomination on its public accountability and transparency web pages by posting a transparency statement that includes:
- its intention to nominate an individual using the emergency retention mechanism;
- a detailed justification explaining why the emergency retention mechanism is being used (while being careful not to disclose the nominee’s personal information);
- confirmation its equity targets have been taken into consideration in the decision;
- the name and contact information of the senior-level university official who has approved the decision; and
- the name and contact information of a university representative who can respond to questions or concerns regarding the nomination.
- keep their transparency statements public for at least 30 days before submitting the nomination, to provide enough time for discussion at the institutional level;
- on the same day they are posted online, email firstname.lastname@example.org the links to and PDFs of the statements;
- submit copies of the statement with the nomination on the Convergence portal; and
- archive all statements so they are publicly available on the institution’s public accountability and transparency web pages for a minimum of three years.
To ensure openness and transparency with their current chairholders, institutions must establish clear criteria to determine whether a Chair will be nominated for renewal, and must communicate these criteria to chairholders at the beginning of and during their terms, as needed.
Tier 1 third-term nominations
Tier 1 chairs cannot be renewed for a third term except in very exceptional circumstances. See Eligibility for Renewal for more information and for what is required in a transparency statement, where applicable. Institutions must:
- on the same day they are posted online, email email@example.com thelinks to and PDFs of their transparency statements;
- submit copies of the statements with their nominations on Convergence; and
- archive all statements so they are available on the institution’s public accountability and transparency web pages for a minimum of three years.
11) Monitoring of recruitment and nomination processes
TIPS will conduct regular monitoring exercises to ensure institutions are following these requirements. Institutions may be asked to provide, at any time within the 48 months following the submission of a nomination, evidence the process met the requirements. In cases where the results of a monitoring exercise find the requirements have not been followed, the program reserves the right to withdraw the nomination, or suspend future payments or terminate the award of an active Chair.
The following outlines examples of documentation the institution may be asked to provide:
- membership details of the recruitment and nomination committee;
- the names of senior officials responsible for ensuring the recruitment process was in line with the institution’s equity targets and the program’s requirements for an open and transparent recruitment process;
- a description of the equity, diversity and inclusion training provided to individuals who participated in the process (including training on unconscious bias);
- a description of the role of the equity and diversity officer or designated equity, diversity and inclusion champion;
- a description of the strategy and proactive efforts made to identify a diverse pool of potential applicants;
- a description of the measures used to ensure individuals who required accommodations or have had life circumstances that have led to leaves or career slowdowns were not disadvantaged during the nomination process;
- evaluation criteria and assessment grids;
- copies of relevant internal policies and guidelines (e.g., equity policies, tenure-track hiring practices/policies, collective agreement or equivalent, etc.); and
- a description of the best practices used to collect data on the participation of individuals from the underrepresented groups, including a copy of the self-identification form.
If you have enquiries related to these requirements or the program’s equity, diversity and inclusion practices, contact: