Launching our Strategic Plan

Between September 2018 and March 2019, the Foundation team undertook an unprecedented strategic planning exercise: The Future Forums. Thanks to this series of consultation workshops which took place across Canada, we gathered viewpoints from our own community and Canadians from universities, the public and private sectors, and from communities which often find themselves excluded from the collective national conversation.

On January 17th, 2020, we unveiled the contents of our Strategic Plan through perspectives that were shared by members of our community whose fields of expertise match some of the main themes that serve as the bedrock of our plan:

•Jamie Snook, 2017 Scholar (Regional Representation)

•Poonam Puri, 2016 Fellow (Inclusive Excellence)

•Robert Steiner, 2019 Mentor (Engaged Leadership)

•Graham Fraser, 2018 Mentor (BilingualismPlus)

•Caroline LeBlanc, 2019 Scholar (Volunteerism and Community Engagement)


This Strategic Plan, which draws from the inspirational themes of Inclusive Excellence and Engaged Leadership, comes as a paradigm shift unfolds in the milieu of academic research. In the current and emerging context, excellence in research can only be attained if certain best practices are put forward by the researchers themselves and the institutions that train them. Outstanding research must not only serve a purpose, but it must also respond to new realities— whether intellectual, social, cultural, technological, environmental and economic—with the participation of communities across Canada and around the world.

In this context of collaboration, great researchers must grow to exhibit certain human qualities such as active listening, humility, creativity, self-awareness, courage and inclusiveness. It is their emotional intelligence and lived experiences that give meaning and depth to their research. Great research also recognizes and values different knowledge sources such as oral traditions, hands-on knowledge and experiential learning approaches because it understands that in order to solve real-world problems, it is important to resort to other ways of thinking and doing.