Values and Principles

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Healthy relationships

We care about our relationships, from personal to institutional. We are flexible and adaptable; we live our values in all stages of our partnerships.


Sustainable approaches

We design for complexity and the long term; we approach activities through a systems lens, focusing on process as well as outcome, resourcing for implementation and sustainment, and recognizing our personal agency as well as our institutional footprint.

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Mutual respect, trust and accountability

We commit to transparency, shared purpose, shared ownership, and shared accountability in our work; we build measurement, evaluation and reflective practices into our collaborations for collective impact.




Inclusion and diversity

We practice deep respect for culture, language and history, personally and institutionally at all scales, from internationalization to local knowledge; and we foster the interconnections among diverse knowledge systems, traditional, personal, formal and informal.



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We recognize power relations in university-community relationships and enable equitable partnerships; we listen; we create and respect space for people to speak for themselves, in their own voices.




Knowledge creation

We enable community engagement as a method for teaching, learning, research and creative activity, and we work with community to co-create and cultivate knowledge and understanding for the purpose of achieving positive social change.



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Learn more by downloading the SFU Strategic Community Engagement Plan

These values and principles were put forward as part of the SFU Strategic Community Engagement Plan. The plan is intended to be a living document, and we are planning to begin what we hope will be ongoing conversation about its vision, principles, goals and recommendations beginning in the Fall.

Please download the plan, and then sign up for our newsletter so we can notify you about when and how to contribute to the evolution of this framework.


You can also send feedback on the Plan to us directly, anytime, by emailing:

Sign up for our newsletter, and stay informed on how SFU is putting these principles into practice.

SFU Community Engagement News is our email newsletter focused on stories, information, events and opportunities all about community engagement. You may unsubscribe at any time.

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