Equity, Diversity, & Inclusion at McGill
McGill University is committed to advancing equity, diversity and inclusion (EDI) in research, including the production of knowledge, equitable access to funding opportunities, and the equitable and inclusive participation of all individuals in the research ecosystem. The University recognizes that EDI policies and practices strengthen the research community, as well as the quality, social relevance, outcomes, and impacts of research.
EDI in research is part of existing institutional policies and plans. “Research and Knowledge” is one of five main themes in McGill University’s EDI Strategic Plan 2020-2025. Promoting equity, diversity and inclusion is one of five core commitments outlined in McGill University’s Strategic Research Plan (2019). It is also addressed in the Provost’s Taskforce Report on Indigenous Studies and Indigenous Education (2017) and Action Plan on Anti-Black Racism (2020).
McGill University also has external commitments in advancing EDI as part of the Canada Research Chairs (CRC) program. It’s CRC EDI Action Plan (2019) and its most recent EDI Progress Report (2020) outline institutional objectives and McGill’s progress on them.
The Internal Resources page includes more details on ongoing EDI initiatives in administrative units, departments, and Faculties, contextualizing these broader institutional commitments to advancing EDI across the University.
- McGill Equity-related Policies & Reports
- Joint Board-Senate Committee on Equity
- Faculty & Departmental Equity Initiatives
- Selected Equity-related Offices at McGill
- Programs & Resources
- Graduate and Postdoctoral Supervision
- Undergraduate Research Opportunities
- Equity in McGill's History
- McGill Equity-related Awards
McGill Equity-related Policies & Reports
McGill adopted a number of policies supporting equity, diversity, & inclusion within the community. In addition, various committees, task forces, and working groups have released reports on EDI initiatives and recommendations.
Joint Board-Senate Committee on Equity (JBSCE)
McGill's Joint Board-Senate Committee on Equity (JBSCE) puts forth policy recommendations to the Senate and Board of Governors that strive "to promote fair access to academic and employment opportunities, and full participation in the McGill community, for all individuals, particularly for those from social groups that have historically encountered or continue to face systemic barriers".
- 2019-20 Annual Report of the Joint Board Senate Committee on Equity
- 2018-19 Annual Report of the Joint Board Senate Committee on Equity
- 2017-18 Annual Report of the Joint Board Senate Committee on Equity
- 2016-17 Annual Report of the Joint Board Senate Committee on Equity
- 2015-16 Annual Report of the Joint Board Senate Committee on Equity
- 2014-15 Annual Report of the Joint Board Senate Committee on Equity
Faculty & Departmental Equity Initiatives
There are multiple and varied equity initiatives taking place at McGill faculties, schools and departments aimed at advancing principles of equity, diversity and inclusion (EDI) within their respective academic units
Selected & Equity-related Offices at McGill
Thomasina Phillips, Manager
Terry Phillips, Director
Francois Miller, Executive Director
Programs & Resources
The mission of the Branches program is “to co-build, with Indigenous and McGill partners, transformative mentorship opportunities and networks of support for Indigenous learners to pick their educational paths.”
The Family Care Hub provides links to resources on campus and the wider community that address needs related to childcare, schooling, student parents, eldercare and healthcare.
The Indigenous Initiatives website “...is intended as a central information hub pertaining to the different Indigenous projects and programs throughout the University including the work of Indigenous Initiatives.”
“ ISCEI is based in the Faculty of Arts and aims to build and expand on existing Indigenous initiatives on and off campus; to help provide a nexus for Indigenous scholarship and community-building; to generate new cross-University synergies and community partnerships; and to add to strategic capacity building in areas where McGill University can have the greatest impact.”
Graduate and Postdoctoral Supervision
McGill’s central resource for guiding supervisors, graduate students, and postdoctoral fellows through their shared learning experiences.
Undergraduate Research Opportunities
Involving undergraduate students in research facilitates inclusion and allows students to see themselves as part of the academic research community at McGill. It also facilitates access to the broader research ecosystem in the early stages of students’ careers, to see if this is something they want to pursue in the future.
Equity in McGill's History
James McGill's successes as a merchant, politician and benefactor are highlighted while also noting that his wealth was connected to his engagement with the colonial economic system and the transatlantic slave trade. The McGill household also, at various times, owned five enslaved Black and Indigenous people.
McGill has recruited two Provostial Research Scholars in Institutional Histories, Slavery and Colonialism to examine two questions:
• What are McGill’s historic connections, both direct and indirect, to transatlantic slavery?
• What are McGill’s historic connections, both direct and indirect, to colonialism and its impact on Indigenous communities?
Joana Joachim earned her PhD in the Department of Art History and Communication Studies and the Institute for Gender, Sexuality and Feminist Studies at McGill University with Dr. Charmaine A. Nelson. Her research interests include Black feminist art histories, Black Canadian studies and Canadian slavery studies.:
Melissa N Shaw is a PhD candidate in History at Queen’s University. Her dissertation entitled, “Blackness and British ‘Fair Play’: Burgeoning Black Social Activism in Ontario and its Responses to the Canadian Colour Line, 1919-1939,” explores the symbiotic relationship between anti-Black racisms in Canada and the rise of Black Canadian socio-political activism in Ontario.:
Archival practices such as appraisal and cataloguing need to be carried out in ways that honours the existence of marginalized groups and individuals.
Organized by SSMU University Affairs, with background research and writing by Sumaya Ugas and Sasha Crawford-Holland, design by Marc Cataford; and formatting and editing by Aishwarya Singh, this timeline projects centers marginalized communities and experiences.
The timeline documents both landmarks in social justice as well as the University’s complicity in settler colonialism, racism, and other forms of dispossession and oppression. It also situates prominent historical figures - such as James McGill - within their specific historical period, emphasizing their role and participation within dominant systems of power.
A summary of early achievements of the first women at McGill University. Includes the first women students to attend McGill, the first to graduate with an undergraduate and later, a graduate degree, and to hold a university professorship
McGill Equity-related Awards
The Catalyst Awards for Sustainability includes a “Research & Education Award”. The award is offered for original research or for advancing student, staff, faculty or institutional learning.
McGill University’s Award for Equity and Community Building recognizes efforts to advance equity and diversity at McGill. Four prizes are given out each year in the following four categories: students, academic staff, administrative and support staff, and teams.