Establishing equity targets for 2021 to 2029


Research demonstrates that achieving an equitable, diverse and inclusive work environment leads to increased excellence, innovation and impact. As the Canada Research Chairs Program is founded on the principles of excellence, it is imperative that its design and implementation be exemplary and that it not perpetuate the systemic barriers that exist in academia and the research environment for members of racialized minorities, Indigenous Peoples, persons with disabilities, and women.

All participating institutions are required to establish equity targets, using the program’s methodology, to address systemic barriers to participation in the program for individuals from the four designated groups: racialized minorities, Indigenous Peoples, persons with disabilities, and women.

The equity target-setting methodology implements incremental equity targets for the program, based mainly on Canada’s population (2016 Census), for each of the four designated groups, as follows: racialized minorities 22%, Indigenous Peoples 4.9%, persons with disabilities 7.5%, and women 50.9%, over 2021 to 2029. The program actively monitors the institutions’ progress toward meeting their established targets. In cases where, at each deadline, equity targets are not met, the program applies consequences until the targets are met.



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Results of participating institutions

In the spirit of openness and transparency, the program publishes the results and findings of its target-setting exercise, while respecting the Privacy Act. Visit the Program Statistics page to see the latest results.

The program also requires institutions to publish their institutional equity target plans for meeting the 2029 targets, while respecting the Privacy Act. Plans are publicly available on institutions’ institutional public accountability and transparency webpages for the program.

A summary of each institution’s equity targets, and their target percentages for 2021 to 2029, will be available in August 2021.



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Reporting requirements

Each year, participating institutions must publicly report on their progress in meeting their targets by completing the Equity, Diversity and Inclusion (EDI) Action Plan progress report and EDI Stipend Report. They must publish their reports on their public accountability and transparency web pages. See the Chairs Administration Guide for more information.



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Target-setting methodology

The equity target-setting methodology implements incremental equity targets for the program, based mainly on Canada’s population (2016 Census), for each of the four designated groups, as follows: racialized minorities 22%, Indigenous Peoples 4.9%, persons with disabilities 7.5%, and women 50.9% (see Table 1).

All participating institutions were required to submit an equity target plan to the program by June 4, 2021. These plans required setting equity targets for each of the four designated groups, as applicable, for each equity target deadline. This is to lead institutions incrementally, over 2021 to 2029, to the population-based equity targets. Large institutions with 40 or more allocated chairs  are also required to set targets by tier, to ensure representation at both the emerging Tier 2 and established Tier 1 levels of the program.

Table 1: June 2021 representation in the program vs. 2029 targets
Four Designated Groups June 2021 Program Representation 2029 Equity Targets
Racialized minorities 21.4% 22% (data: 2016 Census)
Indigenous Peoples 3.2% 4.9% (data: 2016 Census)
Persons with disabilities 5.5% 7.5%*
Women and gender minorities** 38.6% 50.9% (data: 2016 Census)

* The target of 7.5% (vs. 14% census) for persons with disabilities acknowledges that low self-identification rates could impact the ability to achieve a higher target, due to the reluctance of individuals with disabilities to self-identify in an employment setting. This percentage will be reviewed in 2025.

** Individuals who self-identify as women, transgender, gender-fluid, nonbinary and Two-Spirit contribute to the program’s equity targets and are reported in the program statistics in the category in which they self-identify.

Targets in percentages and in numbers of chairs

As part of their 2021-2029 equity target plans, institutions are required to set target percentages for each equity target deadline in the 2021-2029 period. These target percentages serve to determine the institution’s corresponding equity targets in numbers of chairs. Institutions are required to meet their targets in numbers of chairs for each group, as applicable, at each deadline. Institutions are not able to change these target percentages following submission of their plan to the program in June 2021.

The equity targets in numbers of chairs are calculated based on the target percentages identified by the institution in their plan, and the institution’s total number of active (i.e., occupied) chairs at the time the equity targets were confirmed (see Table 2 below for timelines).

The program will convert the target percentages identified by the institutions in their June 2021 plans into targets in numbers of chairs three times leading up to 2029: in February 2023, 2026 and 2028. The conversions will be based on the total number of active chairs the institution has at each point.

Table 2: Equity target deadlines for 2021 to 2029
Year 2021 2022 2023 2024 2025 2026 2027 2028 2029
Equity target deadline - December 31 - - December 31 - December 31 - December 31
Equity target confirmation

June

Submission of 2021-2029 equity target plan (target percentages) and confirmation of 2022 equity targets
(in numbers of chairs)

-

February

Confirmation of 2025 equity targets
(in numbers of chairs)

- -

February

Confirmation of 2027 equity targets
(in numbers of chairs)

-

February

Confirmation of 2029 equity targets
(in numbers of chairs)

-

Minimum, standardized and upper-level target percentage ranges

The program stipulated a range of minimum, standardized and upper-level targets to support setting target percentages. The target percentages could not be set any lower than the targets stipulated in the minimum target range for each group for each deadline.



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Consequences

Institutions found to have not met their equity target or targets at any of the given equity target deadlines leading up to 2029 will be limited to submitting only new nominations where individuals self-identify as belonging to one or more of the four designated groups and where the institution has a target to be met for that group leading up to the 2029 period, until their equity target gap or gaps for that deadline is met. All renewals can continue to be submitted during this time.

Institutions that do not meet their equity targets by the December 2029 deadline will see their total allocation of chairs reduced for an extended period of time. The exact methodology to be used will be shared with institutions prior to 2023.



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Equity target-setting tool

To calculate their incremental equity targets, institutions were required to complete the equity target-setting tool and submit it to the program by the June 4, 2021, deadline. Institutions are encouraged to continue to use this tool leading up to 2029 to help them anticipate changes in their equity targets based on their total numbers of active chairs and on the target percentages they set in their plans.



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Contact Information

If you have enquiries related to the Canada Research Chairs Program’s equity, diversity and inclusion requirements and practices, see Frequently Asked Questions or contact:

General inquiries
edi-edi@chairs-chaires.gc.ca