Overarching Strategic Directions and Major New Campus‑Wide Actions
This DEDI strategy focuses on five campus-wide core strategic directions:
1. Teaching and learning
2. Leadership and capacity
3. Research and innovation
4. Campus climate and environment
5. Representation and success
There are several enabling activities that support the implementation of the DEDI strategy at an institutional level that include the current University Academic Plan (UAP), the Indigenous Framework, the Framework and Action Plan on Black Inclusion, and the DEDI plans that exist in various faculties, divisions and units. This DEDI Strategy is meant to augment these existing frameworks and plans serving as an umbrella to support and complement strategic planning, development, and implementation of focused activities to advance DEDI at York. Individual faculties, divisions and units will identify and resource appropriate enabling activities for implementation of their specific DEDI strategies and activities. In terms of the academic implications, it is also important that the University Senate and its committees, including Faculty Councils, also engage and foster the work of DEDI.
While the Division of Equity, People and Culture takes a leadership role in advancing this DEDI strategy, success depends on the participation of the entire community including our students, faculty, instructors, and staff. Everyone has a responsibility to advance this work.
The DEDI Strategy in Action
This strategy is a long-term endeavour that will evolve over time. The recommendations included in this strategy cannot all happen at once – they represent initiatives proposed to be taken up over the next five years (2023 – 2028). This DEDI Strategy will serve the University beyond this period of time, anticipating the strategic directions will remain unchanged, yet knowing that priorities and initiatives will change in an ever-evolving climate and context.
The strategy aims to embed DEDI into the fabric of York University in pursuit of living its mission and values. The DEDI strategy consists of several interdependent dimensions, institutionally embedding DEDI principles, practices and actions. This is visually represented as the head of a flower in Figure 4.
Figure 4: York University 2023-2028 DEDI Strategy
At the core of the DEDI strategy represented in the eye of the flower are five people created and connected by a single line drawing that represents the York campus community broadly and, more specifically, undergraduate students, graduate students, faculty, instructors, and staff. People are at the heart of the strategy and should always be centred in the work.
The eye of the flower is surrounded by a red circle where the five strategic directions of the strategy are located, indicating their core importance. These provide an intentional focus for the five years of the plan to help drive transformative change. The five strategic directions are described in more detail. Each strategic direction is defined and discussed in terms of recommendations for new campus-wide initiatives; initiatives already in progress; calls to action for the University community to consider; and benchmarks to signal success.
The light blue circle references University strategies and plans that are connected to the DEDI strategy and the strategic directions. The inclusion of this circle is meant to indicate the interconnectedness of this work across the university community. These include the UAP, the Indigenous Framework, the Framework on Black Inclusion and the individual faculty, divisional and unit DEDI plans that already exist or are being formed.
There are 12 outer petals of the flower, each one representing one of the principals outlined earlier in the strategy. Each petal, or principle, serves as a reminder of the purpose and goals behind DEDI. These principles form the basis for a common understanding and framing for DEDI work across the University.
York University will cultivate inclusive teaching and learning environments that nurture multiple and intersectional ways of knowing, including the incorporation of DEDI principles in curriculum and programs.
York University will cultivate inclusive and equitable research environments that nurture multiple and intersectional ways of knowing, create and nurture diverse research teams and encourage research programs in traditionally equity-deserving settings.
Through a range of efforts across the University, York will work to build an environment that is representative of the communities it serves by actively recruiting, supporting, retaining, and advancing students, faculty, instructors, and staff from equity-deserving communities.
York University strives to be a community where all members demonstrate the knowledge and skills necessary to navigate through and lead in a diverse world. York commits to building capacity in its leadership to advance EDI for today, tomorrow and the future.
York University will work towards creating an inclusive and equitable community where everyone has the potential to feel a sense of belonging and that they are respected. The University will undertake initiatives to enhance the accessibility of physical and virtual spaces for students, staff, faculty, and instructors.