Equity, Diversity and Inclusion: What Faculty Need to Know

Thursday, February 21, 2019 2:00 pm - 4:00 pm EST (GMT -05:00)

Lisa Willis headshot
NSERC now requires an Equity, Diversity and Inclusion (EDI) statement on its applications and CIHR wants to know how you are incorporating sex and gender into your research but most faculty don't even know what EDI is. 

Join Prof. Lisa Willis for a seminar on including EDI into your grants, reference letters, hiring practices and managing trainees.

The lack of diversity in work spaces decreases productivity for everyone, not just those who are underrepresented. Scientific research demonstrates that diverse groups are more creative and better able to solve problems.

Though the perception is that things are improving, NSERC’s recently released report shows that attrition rates in Canadian STEM fields are higher for women than for men at all career stages and that the percentage of women has not changed substantially in the last 15 years. Racialized and Indigenous people are also underrepresented at Canadian universities.

This seminar will present the current statistics for Canadian STEM fields as well as the scientific literature on the benefits of working in diverse groups, the manifestations of bias (both unconscious and intentional), and best practices for improving. Topics include hiring practices, writing reference letters, reviewing grants, managing trainees, and incorporating EDI into grant applications.


  • 2:00-3:00 PM - Seminar with Prof. Lisa Willis
  • 3:00-4:00 PM - Group discussion about specific topics like writing Equity, Diversity and Inclusion (EDI)  statements for grant applications.

Feel free to bring your writing implements! All are welcome and encouraged to attend.

More about the Speaker

Lisa Willis is an Assistant Professor in the Faculty of Science at the University of Alberta. She received her BSc from the University of Victoria in BC, spent four years working at the National Research Council Canada in Ottawa, and then obtained her PhD from the University of Guelph under the supervision of Prof. Chris Whitfield. She received a Banting postdoctoral fellowship while working in Prof. Mark Nitz's lab at the University of Toronto. Her field of expertise is glycobiology.