EDI Definitions

One of the goals of the Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion Initiative is to explore, in a thoughtful and meaningful way, some of the steps that could be taken by the university and by each of us to overcome barriers that prevent us from achieving a more inclusive and equitable learning and working environment.

This can be hard work.  It can take time to learn and change.  We can only do this together.

Over the coming months we invite everyone to listen, talk, and reflect on what equity, diversity and inclusion mean to you.


These definitions are a starting place, they are open to conversation and will change over time.  The following are offered for discussion:


Inclusion refers to belonging.  When you belong, you are accepted for the unique traits that make you different from other people, and you accept others for theirs. This means that you do not have to change or hide parts of yourself to ‘fit in’. You can be flexible in your approach to building relationships across differences – both to be yourself and to meet others as they are.  Achieving inclusion is the shared responsibility of everyone.


Equity is about fairness.  Equity recognizes differences and takes those differences into account to ensure a fair outcome.  This is different from equality, which is treating everyone the same.  Equity recognizes that injustices have occurred and continue to occur, and involves removing barriers, biases, and obstacles that impede equal access and opportunity to succeed.



Diversity involves respect. Diversity is a respectful acknowledgement of the many ways in which we are different.  At the heart of diversity is an invitation to learn more about different world views, philosophies, practices and ways of being. It is about moving beyond simple tolerance to authentically engaging the rich differences of each of us. It is about understanding each other.