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The 50 – 30 Challenge: Your Diversity Advantage

From: Innovation, Science and Economic Development Canada

Take part in the 50 – 30 Challenge

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Number of participating organizations

1,172

Last update: April 13, 2021

Find out more about how the 50 – 30 Challenge will act as a framework to accelerate diversity actions already taking place in many Canadian organizations and to encourage other Canadian organizations in adopting practices to improve equity.

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About the 50 – 30 Challenge

The 50 – 30 Challenge is an initiative between the Government of Canada, business and diversity organizations. Together with project co-creators, many of whom have been striving to increase corporate diversity for decades, the government has developed a plan to improve access for racialized persons, people who identify as LGBTQ2, people living with disabilities, as well as First Nations, Inuit and Métis to positions of influence and leadership on corporate boards and in senior management.

The goal of the program is to challenge Canadian organizations to increase the representation and inclusion of diverse groups within their workplace, while highlighting the benefits of giving all Canadians a seat at the table. The government has always believed in seeking the best available advice when making decisions.

The 50 – 30 Challenge asks that organizations aspire to two goals:

  1. Gender parity ("50%") on Canadian board(s) and senior management; and
  2. Significant representation ("30%") on Canadian board(s) and senior management of other under-represented groups, including racialized persons, people living with disabilities (including invisible and episodic disabilities) and members of the LGBTQ2 community. The program and participants recognize that First Nations, Inuit and Métis peoples as founding peoples of Canada are under-represented in positions of economic influence and leadership.

Canada is home to a variety of industries and sectors. To broaden participation and to address their unique needs, the Challenge is offered in three distinct streams:

The streams allow participating organizations to strive to achieve their 50 – 30 goals in a way that best suits and reflects their needs and acknowledges the variety of sizes and structures of organizations, including those without boards of directors or senior management teams.


How to participate

Organizations, not-for-profits and other institutions that are interested in the 50 – 30 Challenge can sign up by filling in the 50-30 Challenge form.

If you have any additional concerns or questions, you can contact us at 50-30ChallengeInfo@canada.ca.


The benefits

Diversity in the workplace makes good business sense. Organizations that are more diverse:

Effective diversity and inclusion strategies can help organizations advance their goals. Many organizations have shown that leveraging diversity and inclusion can:

  1. Help them attract the best and the brightest to broaden the talent pool and help overcome skill gaps in a rapidly transforming and increasingly volatile economyFootnote 1.
  2. Gain access to more diverse markets. According to the Harvard Business Review, diverse companies are 70% more likely to capture new markets than organizations that do not actively recruit and support talent from under-represented groupsFootnote 2.
  3. Increases employee satisfaction and engagement fostering greater loyalty, retention, productivity, and overall performanceFootnote 3. A 2018 McKinsey Report found that companies that have higher degrees of racially and ethnically diverse employees have a 33% performance advantage over companies relying on a "culture fit" that tends to trend white and monocultural.Footnote 4
  4. Promote innovation by bringing multiple perspectives and experiences to bear on complex problems. Indeed a 2018 Boston Consulting Group study found that companies that have more diverse management teams have 19% higher revenue due to innovationFootnote 5.
  5. Reduce risk, given the massive reputational damage that missteps on diversity and inclusion can produceFootnote 6.

Organizations participating in the 50 – 30 Challenge will be offered resources to further support them in the program and help them determine their best pathway forward, such as:


Partners and participants

For a list of organizations that have signed on to the 50 – 30 Challenge, please visit 50 – 30 Challenge: Participating organizations.

The Government of Canada has been working with a number of organizations to develop the 50 – 30 Challenge.

Here is a list of Challenge partners, in alphabetical order:


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