2. Inclusive excellence

Our faculty and staff are the source of our success and the key drivers of our vision, mission, and aspirations


In support of our unwavering commitment to excellence, we aspire to be an accessible destination employer and the national leader in championing equity, diversity, inclusion, and accessibility. We will prioritize wellness and respect and continue to support and empower our people to achieve their career aspirations; we will recognize individuals and teams for their innovations and successes; and we will all be people-focused and accountable at all levels of the institution.

We will monitor our progress through improved data collection and by sharing evidence of our successes in recruitment, diversity, inclusion, retention, performance, and employee satisfaction.

Actions:

1. Enrich and diversify our faculty and staff complement by actively searching for the most accomplished and promising individuals, evolving our best practices for recruitment and retention, and offering our candidates competitive conditions that attract them to Dalhousie. We will also conduct a review of targeted hiring initiatives, including the Dalhousie Diversity Faculty Awards (DDFA), and make adjustments (e.g., strategic cluster hires) when necessary to ensure significant improvements in recruiting African Canadian and Indigenous faculty and staff, with special emphasis on recruiting and retaining African Nova Scotian and Mi’kmaw faculty and staff.

Key Achievements to Date

  • Created and hired new Employment Equity Manager position
  • 90% of first choice faculty and staff candidates hired
  • 64% of faculty and staff searches resulted in an equity candidate hire
  • Created and hired new Executive Recruitment Advisor position

Upcoming Priorities

  • Developing best practices for talent acquistion
  • Ensuring competitive terms and conditions for employment, including a comprehensive job evaluation review
  • Review of target hiring initiatives
  • Refreshing Dal Core Competencies, including the addition of an equity and inclusion competency
  • Reviewing and editing our Employment Equity Policy
2. Foster an institution-wide commitment to a healthy, accessible, and academically inclusive culture for working and learning. Encourage an organizational culture of mutual respect, accountability and collaboration that acknowledges the value and contribution of all employees to the university’s vision and mission.

Key Achievements to Date

  • Accessibility Plan finalized and submitted to Province of Nova Scotia
  • Launch of Flexible Work Guidelines
  • Your Voice survey results remained stable or showed improvements in many areas since 2019 – the majority of faculty and staff reported that they are motivated in their jobs and get a strong sense of achievement from their work and reported improved recognition, meeting effectiveness and an increased sense of faculty belonging
  • Completed two-year review of Dalhousie’s Sexualized Violence Policy with minor revisions

Upcoming Priorities

  • Implementation of Accessibility Plan
  • Continue to work with campus leaders to taking a progressive approach to work, prioritizing safety, flexibility, efficiency, engagement, and productivity
  • Building an institutional action plan based on Your Voice survey results and working with leaders across campus to develop action plans based on unit-specific results
  • Review of Personal Harassment and Discrimination Policy
3. Develop actionable strategies to drive the pursuit of excellence and recognize individual and team achievements in the areas of wellness and accessibility including development of an institution-wide wellness strategy and progressive approaches to how we work (including virtual workplaces) that prioritize safety, flexibility, efficiency, engagement, and productivity.

Key Achievements to Date

  • Launch of Dalhousie’s Work Well Strategy

Upcoming Priorities

  • Enhancing Dalhousie’s culture and recognition initiatives
  • Developing a recognition policy
4. Provide mentorship, support, and career development opportunities for faculty and staff across all employee groups. This will include a leadership training curriculum that includes a focus on EDIA training and mentorship to achieve people-focused professional goals to maximize support and retention of equity deserving faculty, staff, and leaders.

Key Achievements to Date

  • Conceptualization of Inclusive Excellence Framework
  • Re-vamped our temporary hiring process to prioritize use of the Talent Pathways Program, our internal temporary staffing service which places equity-deserving candidates into temporary opportunities here at Dalhousie, resulting in 42 individuals placed through the program

Upcoming Priorities

  • Creating a Career Development Strategy, including an Aspiring Leaders Program and mentorship programs
  • Hiring a Career Development Consultant position
  • Continuing development of an Inclusive Excellence Framework
  • Increasing the representation and retention of Black and Indigenous candidates - and specifically Africa Nova Scotian and Mi'kmaw candidates
  • Redeveloping Academic Leadership Program
  • Addressing barriers to advancement among Facilities Management team
5. Prioritize advancing the work of Dalhousie’s Diversity and Inclusiveness Strategy, Indigenous Strategy, African Nova Scotian Strategy, and actions that reflect Dalhousie’s commitment to an anti-racist culture. Commit to improved processes to support the experience of senior leaders from historically underrepresented groups.

Key Achievements to Date

  • Becoming a signatory on the Scarborough Charter – a landmark national agreement focused on addressing anti-Black racism and promoting Black inclusion in higher education
  • Hosted a series of “Speak Truth to Power” forums on topics such as Systemic Racism, Gender-Based Violence, and Indigenous Women’s Stewardship
  • Continue to host the annual Viola Desmond lecture series
  • Hosting an annual Human Rights & Equity Conference
  • EDIA Forums hosted across campus by individual faculties and units

Upcoming Priorities

  • Forming Pan-University Equity & Inclusion Committees to increase collaboration and coordination on:
    • Diversity and Inclusiveness Strategy
    • Caucuses (Black Faculty & Staff, Indigenous, Accessibility, and Queer)
    • Indigenous Strategy
    • African Nova Scotian Strategy
    • Institution-wide and Faculty and non-academic unit equity and inclusion committees
  • Developing a Racial Violence Policy and an anti-racist program and annual forum
  • Co-sponsoring the Fall 2023 Universities Studying Slavery (USS) conference
  • Increasing coordination and documentation on faculty- and unit-led EDIA-focused events
6. Determine and work towards meaningful representation targets for equity deserving groups on Dalhousie’s leadership teams.

Key Achievements to Date

  • Completed a comprehensive pan-university Employment Systems Review (ESR) to identify barriers to employment equity
  • Formal division of “Employment Equity” created in HR
  • University-wide Employment Equity Plan drafted and undergoing a final round of revisions before being submitted for formal approval
  • 52% of employment equity gaps identified by the Federal Contractor’s Program (FCP) reduced or closed

Upcoming Priorities

  • Approval of university-wide Employment Equity Plan
  • Creating a proposal for an Inclusive Leadership Academy as an outcome of the Scarborough Charter
  • Ensuring supports exist and are available for senior leaders from historical and current underrepresented groups
(L-R): Student with protective glasses, instructor speaking, student smiling, staff member wearing a Dalhousie mask

Our shared plan

Researcher looking over their experiment in a laboratory

3. High-impact research