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Equality Statement

equality statement illustration

IDRC strives for equality in all aspects of its work.

We support the generation of knowledge — including by individuals from diverse genders, communities, histories, and experiences — that tackles the systems that perpetuate inequalities on the basis of identity.

Inequalities exist across multiple and intersecting categories of identity, including, but not limited to: gender, sexuality, age, class, race, caste, ethnicity, citizenship status, religion, and ability; taking an intersectional approach to equality recognizes these differences and understands diversity as central to advancing equality. Given that gender inequality is a significant barrier across all dimensions of diversity, IDRC invests specific efforts in ensuring its work promotes gender equality.

IDRC recognizes that the strength and credibility of its work rests on a two-pronged approach: first, diversity and inclusion are integrated into our internal systems, policies, and practice; second, our research programming considers diversity and inclusion as fundamental dimensions of research quality, and aims to advance equality and inclusion in the world.

We recognize and acknowledge:

  • Gender refers to the socially constructed differences attributed to being male and female, and is non-binary and diverse. Differences are rooted in power dynamics between people of different genders, gender norms and stereotypes that cause and reinforce inequalities of opportunities and resources between and among genders. This manifests as discrimination and exclusion of persons of genders with less social power, often girls, women and people who identify as LGBTIQ2+.
  • Women, girls, LGBTIQ2+, and other marginalized groups experience persistent, structural barriers to equality in the developing world and have a right to equality.
  •  Achieving equality varies by place and must be situated within the socio-cultural, political, and economic contexts in the different regions where IDRC works; similarly, inequalities are not static and can vary and change over time.


1. Respect for people, engagement, and transparency

Treating all people with respect, dignity, and fairness is fundamental to achieving our mandate and maintaining strong relationships with stakeholders; it contributes to a safe and healthy work environment that promotes engagement, openness and transparency.

2. Global resonance and relevance

Research supported by IDRC aligns with globally agreed principles including UN Agenda 2030 for Sustainable Development and other systemic frameworks and goals surrounding gender equality and inclusion.

3. Coherence

Achieving equality and inclusion outcomes through research requires IDRC to be walk the talk; that is, that our internal policies and practice be coherent with our mandate and strategy. This means that IDRC fosters a workplace culture — through its code of conduct, policies and collective agreement — that promotes respect, diversity and inclusion that aligns with our strategy and goals. The inclusion of all people and the ideas they generate are a great source of our innovation.

4. Equitable partnerships

IDRC promotes and encourages diversity and inclusion considerations in the partnerships that it builds with grantees, funders and other stakeholders in Canada and globally.

5. Engage stakeholders in conduct of research for change

IDRC supports research in partnership with expert researchers and advocates knowledgeable of the specific context and who work to transform harmful norms, stereotypes, and inequalities in their countries and communities.

6. Research quality

Attention to diversity and inclusion is a fundamental dimension of research quality.

7. Foundational to strategy

IDRC treats diversity and inclusion as an explicit and key part of strategy development and execution.

8. Accountability

Accountability for monitoring, evaluation, and learning as a means of improving its work on diversity and inclusion is of primary importance for IDRC.