Ottawa to pull research chair funding unless diversity issue addressed at universities
The federal granting councils that award the prestigious Canada Research Chairs say universities must offer up more diverse candidates for the honour or they will lose their funds.
Directors of the program, which sends out $265-million every year across 1,600 researchers, say new measures unveiled on Thursday would help to address the chronic underrepresentation of women, Indigenous people, those with disabilities and visible minorities among the award’s ranks. For example, only 28 per cent of chairholders at large universities are women, and they are more likely to be in the bottom of the program’s two funding tiers.
Under the new rules, postsecondary institutions have until Dec. 15 to create an action plan on how to achieve more diversity among their candidates, and then they have another 18 to 24 months to ensure the demographics of those given the awards reflect the demographics of those academics eligible to receive them.