Gender-Based Analysis Plus (GBA+)

Institutional GBA+ Capacity

Key actions within NSERC in 2021-22 will continue to advance the implementation of GBA+ governance within the agency. GBA+ principles are firmly embedded in the Tri-Agency Equity, Diversity and Inclusion (EDI) Action Plan, which seeks to provide equitable and inclusive access for all researchers to NSERC funding opportunities, and to influence the achievement of an inclusive post-secondary research system and culture in Canada.

Recognizing that systemic barriers remain in achieving the full participation of underrepresented or disadvantaged groups (including, but not limited to, women, Indigenous Peoples, persons with disabilities, members of visible minority/racialized groups and members of LGBTQ2+ communities) in science and engineering careers, an intersectional approach will be taken that seeks to look not only at disaggregated data on gendered participation in research, but at the intersections of gender membership in other equity-seeking groups.

Committees and Working Groups

The NSERC Standing Committee on Equity Diversity and Inclusion, formerly a special committee, will contribute to the development of policies and processes to support the inclusion of diverse participants on selection committees and advisory bodies. This presents a significant addition to the governance structure at NSERC for supporting GBA+ objectives.

Through the application GBA+ to NSERC’s overall governance and in alignment with the EDI Action Plan, guidelines related to the composition of all committees will be revised to emphasize the importance of gender diversity in committee and working group membership, and to extend diversity considerations beyond gender.

Training

Mandatory GBA+ training for all staff will continue in 2021-22. As of April 2020, 81% of the workforce had completed this training. Both external training for review committee members and internal training for staff will continue in order to facilitate the inclusion of a GBA+ focus across all domains. Within Programs and Partnerships, an EDI lens will be integrated more widely into criteria used to assess approaches to team-based research, training, and mentorship.

To further support GBA training, managers and staff who are involved in hiring, as well as peer reviewers, will be provided with training on recognizing and mitigating unconscious bias.

Self-Identification Questionnaire

The three granting agencies will continue to roll out the revised questionnaire for collection of self-identification information, after launching it for the Canada Research Chairs program in June 2020. The original version of the self-identification questionnaire encompassed questions on age, gender identity, Indigeneity, visible minority status, and disability. The questions on gender, Indigenous identity, population group, and disability have been updated in the new version in order to provide more nuanced responses, and questions on sexual orientation as well as first language and language spoken at home have been added.

Competition Statistics Dashboards

NSERC will work toward the release of demographic data on program participation and success rates, and facilitate the extension of an EDI analysis across agency programs. The release of these datasets will enable a clearer understanding of gaps between award application rates and funding rates for members of under-represented groups, and allow for the identification of particular areas to target with EDI initiatives. This change will support the assessment of key performance indicators relating to objective one of the EDI Action Plan, equitable and inclusive access for all researchers to granting agency funding opportunities, by providing the data needed to measure application and award rates by gender across programs.

Dimensions: equity, diversity, and inclusion Canada

The Dimensions program seeks to facilitate post-secondary transformation to increase equity, diversity and inclusion (EDI) within the research ecosystem, addressing obstacles faced by, but not limited to, women, Indigenous Peoples, persons with disabilities, members of visible minorities/racialized groups, and members of LGBTQ2+ communities. Currently being piloted with a cohort of 17 institutions, the Dimensions program will continue to progress its co-development process and begin to move toward its application phase. Among application requirements will be the need for institutions to present qualitative and quantitative evidence to develop better EDI practices within the research ecosystem.

Highlights of GBA+ Results Reporting Capacity by Program

Discovery Research

The Discovery Research Program has impacts that support the pillars and goals of the Gender Results Framework, namely Economic Participation and Prosperity, and its objectives of increasing labour market opportunities for women and achieving a better balance of gender across occupations. Through its emphasis on training, this program also supports the pillar of Education and Skills Development.

The program collects sufficient data to enable it to monitor and report program impacts by gender and diversity. This will be expanded and enhanced in 2021 through the use of the revised self-identification questionnaire, allowing more data on diversity factors to be collected and with more granularity, permitting a more intersectional analysis. This data will be made available in the coming year on the EDI Dashboard via PowerBI in order to help facilitate monitoring and reporting.

Research Training and Talent Development

The Research Training and Talent Development Program has impacts that support the pillars and goals of the Gender Results Framework, most notably under Education and Skills Development, with its objective of providing more diversified educational paths and career choices across genders.

The program collects sufficient data to enable it to monitor and report program impacts by gender and diversity. The data collection and use will be the same as above.

Research Partnerships

The Research Partnerships Program has impacts that support the pillars and goals of the Gender Results Framework, namely: Economic Participation and Prosperity, particularly the provision of increased labour market opportunities for women and a better gender balance across occupations.

The program collects sufficient data to enable it to monitor and report program impacts by gender and diversity. The data collection and use will be the same as above.

Internal Services

Internal Services have impacts that support the pillars and goals of the Gender Results Framework, namely: Economic Participation and Prosperity, Leadership and Democratic Participation. Under these pillars, Internal Services has an impact on the objectives of equal sharing of parenting roles and responsibilities, more women in permanent and well-paid jobs, and more diversity in senior leadership positions and on boards.

NSERC collects sufficient data to enable it to monitor and report impacts by gender and diversity. This capacity will be increased with a move toward use of the revised self-identification questionnaire for the purposes of increasing diversity across boards, committees, and working groups. In addition, NSERC will monitor progress and results of the Employment Equity Self-ID Modernization Project led by Treasury Board Secretariat.

Data collected during the COVID19 pandemic on the experiences of inequality will provide a better understanding of the gendered aspects of work-life balance challenges of staff.

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