About our Inclusive Excellence Cluster Hiring Initiative
Over the next three years, all UCalgary faculties will participate in our Inclusive Excellence Cluster Hiring Initiative, which will recruit 45 professors from equity-deserving groups. This initiative is being pursued consistent with Section 6 on equitable and inclusive hiring in the UCalgary GFC Academic Staff Criteria & Processes Handbook and Section 10 of the Alberta Human Rights Act.
Inclusive excellence affirms how diversity can deepen learning, enhance critical thinking and problem solving, and fuel creativity and innovation in teaching and learning, research and artistic enquiry, professional service, and community engagement in academia. Recognizing the integral relationship between equity-as-fairness and inclusive excellence is necessary to create access to, and success within, our university. The individual and institutional pursuit of excellence, quality, or merit is best achieved in equitable, diverse, inclusive, and accessible environments in which everyone has the potential and opportunity to flourish. While the human pursuit of excellence is an inclusive one – not limited to any specific demographic group – how it is socially defined, operationalized, accessed, and recognized historically has been exclusionary of, among other things, diverse social identities, ways of knowing, knowledge, methodologies, and perspectives (see our FAQ #3 and #4 below). Historically, access to our universities has been shaped by histories of discriminatory ideas, attitudes, processes, and practices.
UCalgary is a member of Universities Canada, which adopted 7 “Inclusive Excellence Principles” in October 2017. These principles complemented the 13 Principles on Indigenous Education that were adopted by Universities Canada in June 2019, and that focused on curricula, intercultural competency, and Indigenous education leadership, among other things. Three Inclusive Excellence principles are especially relevant to our initiative:
- Principle 1 states that “universities are enriched by diversity and inclusion. As leaders of universities that aspire to be diverse, fair and open, we will make our personal commitment to diversity and inclusion evident.”
- The importance of proactive ameliorative measures is highlighted in Principle 3 in which universities “commit to taking action to provide equity of access and opportunity. To do so, we will identify and address barriers to, and provide support for, the recruitment and retention of senior university leaders, university Board and Senate members, faculty, staff and students, particularly from under-represented groups.”
- In Principle 5, university leaders committed their institutions to find “ways to integrate inclusive excellence throughout our university’s teaching, research, community engagement and governance. In doing so, we will engage with students, faculty, staff, our boards of governors, senates, and alumni to raise awareness and encourage all efforts.”
Inclusive Excellence is one of four principles – along with Black flourishing, mutuality, and accountability – in the Scarborough Charter on Anti-Black Racism and Black Inclusion. For UCalgary, like other signatories of the Scarborough Charter, “Inclusive excellence embodies the recognition that not only is post-secondary education enriched by equity, diversity, and inclusion; equitable inclusion is critical to excellence. Excellence encompasses the ability of universities and colleges to educate and to innovate; to be alive to the complexity and proactive in the face of crisis; to foster fundamental questioning through rigorous, respectful engagements across difference; and to enable societal transformation.”