UBC's Dimensions Self-Assessment

The Dimensions pilot project reviewed the university’s policies, programs, practices and initiatives with an aim to enhancing equity, diversity and inclusion among the UBC research community.

The self-assessment sought to identify systemic barriers and inequities experienced by members of underserved, marginalized or excluded groups in UBC’s research community. It leveraged lessons from UBC’s existing action plans and initiatives relating to EDI in the research ecosystem, including feedback, testimonials, and lived experiences shared by members of historically, persistently or systemically marginalized groups.

The self-assessment informed the creation of a Dimensions action plan to address these systemic barriers and inequities within the university’s research ecosystem.

Thank you to those who contributed their valuable insight and time to inform the self-assessment during the pilot period.

Self-Assessment Approach and Environmental Scan

An environmental scan of the university's EDI landscape, as it pertains to the research ecosystem, was conducted in line with the approach and methodology defined at the outset of the pilot.

The environmental scan identified existing EDI efforts and institutional strategic initiatives and contrasted them against the central requirements of the federal Dimensions program to find areas of impact that promote synergies and avoid duplication of efforts at UBC.

The self-assessment and action plan incorporated findings and recommendations from UBC's existing strategies and plans in the area of EDI, which include, but are not limited to:

UBC's self-assessment leveraged the findings and recommendations of UBC's existing strategies and plans in the area of EDI. These include, but are not limited to, UBC’s:

The self-assessment also examined a variety of elements pertaining to UBC’s research ecosystem, including access, admissions, recruitment, career development, job security, pay, working and learning conditions, resources, retention, and the career progression of members of the UBC research community, i.e., undergraduate and graduate students (either paid or volunteering as research assistants and/or undertaking research-based programs), postdoctoral fellows, faculty (including research associates) and part-and full-time staff who are directly involved in research.

The Self-Assessment Team

The self-assessment team was responsible for carrying out the institutional self-assessment and developing an action plan based on its findings. The team comprised faculty, staff, postdoctoral fellows and students, and included representation from equity-deserving groups as defined by the federal Dimensions program.

In addition to the Dimensions project team, UBC’s self-assessment team was composed of (a/an):

  • Steering Committee: The steering committee provides strategic direction and leadership for the pilot project.
  • Advisory Committee: The advisory committee provides guidance to, and oversight of, the project team, and leads the development of the Dimensions application.
  • Working Groups: Two working groups provided support and expertise for the institutional self-assessment, with a focus on data collection and analysis.
    • Quantitative data & analysis working group: focused on the collection and analysis of EDI-related demographic data about the UBC research community.
    • Qualitative data & analysis working group: focused on the collection and analysis of existing institutional EDI policies, programs, practices and initiatives, as well as information based on lived-experiences from key informants and focus groups.
past Committee And Working Group Members (dates of service)
Steering Committee Members
Advisory Committee Members
Quantitative Data Collection & Analysis Working Group Members
Qualitative Data Collection & Analysis Working Group Members
Dimensions Project Team

UBC’s participation in the Dimensions pilot project is a joint initiative of UBC's Office of the Vice-President, Research and Innovation and the Equity and Inclusion Office. The project team was tasked with convening and coordinating the self-assessment team and with preparing and submitting the application to the federal Dimensions program.


Elsie Achugbue
Director, Institutional Initiatives
Equity & Inclusion Office
Lucy Buchanan-Parker
Planning & Evaluation Strategist
Equity & Inclusion Office
Leslie Grad
Manager, Strategic Initiatives
Office of the Vice-President, Research & Innovation


Evelina Tolstykh, former Dimensions project coordinator, Office of the Vice-President, Research and Innovation (03/2020–03/2023)
Adedoyin Luwaji, former Dimensions planning and evaluation strategist, Office of the Vice-President, Research and Innovation (03/2020–02/2023)

Engagement with the UBC Community

In 2021 and 2022 the UBC Dimensions project team completed the environmental scan and self-assessment. As part of this process, members of the UBC community were invited to provide their insights and input on gaps and issues identified during the self-assessment.

The Dimensions team acknowledges that extensive consultation processes have been previously conducted in support of several institutional strategic initiatives addressing EDI and decolonization at the university. Where possible, qualitative and quantitative information from those consultations and initiatives were incorporated into the Dimensions work. The Dimensions engagement process provided an opportunity to review and gather feedback on information and gaps specific to UBC's research culture and ecosystem as defined within the scope of Dimensions' self-assessment approach

Further feedback or questions about the UBC Dimensions project can be sent to research.innovation@ubc.ca

Direct Consultations and Interviews– May to December 2021
Equity Group Engagement Sessions – January 2022
Information Feedback Board / Engagement Platform – February to April 2022
Opportunities to Engage

The engagement period for the 2022 self-assessment has now closed. If you have any further feedback or questions about the Dimensions project, please contact research.innovation@ubc.ca.