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Author: Alicia & Marcie

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(Ex)clusion - An Exploration of all things Equity, Diversity and Inclusion
26 Episodes
Andrea Silverstone is the Executive Director of Sagesse Domestic Violence Prevention Society, an organization committed to breaking the cycle of violence for individuals, organizations, and communities.  She is a highly respected community partner and collaborative leader.      Andrea is a Registered Social Worker and Mediator with a background in Judaic/Talmudic Law, having attended Lindenbaum College in Jerusalem and York University in Toronto. Beginning her career in Calgary at the Awo Taan Native Women’s Shelter, Andrea later transitioned into her role as the Executive Director of Sagesse. Andrea’s achievements include the 2013 Association of Jewish Family and Child Agencies Goodman Award in recognition of her development and implementation of innovative programming that addresses bullying, violence, and domestic abuse in the Jewish community, the 2015 Alberta Inspiration Award for leadership in Family Violence Prevention and the 2015 RESOLVE Excellence in Community Service and Research Award in recognition of her distinguished contribution to creating homes and communities safe from interpersonal violence and abuse.  Andrea has implemented a collective impact initiative to address domestic and sexual violence province-wide, she has developed programming to address the systemic nature of domestic violence in under-studied communities such as women of affluence and strives daily to ensure individuals affected by abuse and gender inequality are made visible and know that they have an ally in her.
Welcome to Season 2! We kick things off on Ada Lovelace Day, the 1st day of WinSTEM week 2020! Our Guest:Dr. Laleh Behjat is a professor at the University of Calgary in Alberta Canada. Her research mainly focuses on applying mathematical techniques to make computers faster and more efficient. She has won several international, national and institutional awards for her work on computer engineering and engineering education. In addition, Dr. Behjat has a passion for increasing the status of women in (STEM) and has worked on recruiting more women to engineering for over a decade. She has won many awards for her work on this topic! Including as a recipient of the 2018 Alberta Women’s Science Networks Minerva Mentor Award, the 2015 Association of Professional Engineers and Geoscientists of Alberta (APEGA) Women in Engineering Champion Award, and Association of Computing Machinery, Special Interest Group in Design Automation Service Award in 2014. Earlier this year she became the NSERC (National Science and Engineering Research Council) Women in Science and Engineering Prairie Chair! As part of today’s discussion, Dr. Behjat will be discussing some of her plans as the new Prairie Chair. - 
A Crossover Episode with The Colour Gap Podcast Shahzia Noorally, a podcast that uncovers the unique and uncomfortable truths about being a Woman of Colour in the corporate world. We all experience spaces - including work spaces differently. The episode will discuss the pitfalls in EDI efforts when an intersectional lens is not applied. We will also discuss the importance of listening to and understanding lived experiences.
Positive Choices Consulting: Welfare League of Canada https://7f9b59af-af92-41cd-8e6c-aa287... National Institute of Forensic Social Work https://nifsw.comAdditional Reading:
Cross-polliNation aims to show that creativity and innovation are widely accessible by combining knowledge or talents you already have or can learn.  crosspollination.coTwitter @Pollinata1, on Instagram and LinkedIn Recovery and Women in Alberta The Gig Economy Episode Reference
Alex Valorso brings with her a wide variety of skills as an accomplished humanitarian professional with experience in disaster management and gender. Alex holds a BA in International Development with a focus on community development, a master’s degree in Disaster and Emergency Management with focus on gender and disaster, and certificates in Shelter and Settlement Coordination in Emergencies, Addressing Gender-Based Violence in Emergencies, and International Humanitarian Law. Her most recent accomplishment includes GenderPro, a specialized technical program at George Washington University. Alex volunteers as the VP of her local Women's Resource Centre and has recently spearheaded a Women in Leadership initiative for her community. Dedicated to working with communities, Alex has extensive practitioner experience in emergency management throughout BC, and during various responses in Canada. She is currently a Senior Advisor at EMBC (Emergency Management British Columbia), and is a Gender Equity Advisor through the Gender Equity Office. Prior to joining EMBC, Alex provided technical support as a Gender Specialist with Cuso International in Guyana, participated in an emergency mission for the refugee crisis in Tanzania with MSF, and provided expertise during various responses as a coordinator with the Canadian Red Cross. Please note: that Alex speaks from her experience and not for the Government of BC. Resources: - -
Our guest, Kimberly Girling –  is the Interim Executive Director of Evidence for Democracy, a Canadian non-profit organization promoting the transparent use of evidence in government decision-making. Kimberly holds a PhD in Neuroscience from the University of British Columbia and is an alumnus of the Mitacs Canadian Science Policy fellowship, a program connecting scientists to policy issues in the Canadian government. She worked for several years as a policy analyst in the Canadian public sector.Our discussion includes the use of scientific evidence in the current pandemic crisis, and how we can use transparent evidence based science moving forward when writing current and future government policies. Evidence for Democracy: Report Evidence in Action: An Analysis of Information Gathering and Use by Canadian Parliamentarians Upcoming Q&A on the role of the science community in responding to COVID19 ipolitics piece on EDI: We are aware that policies are changing rapidly and that discussion within the podcast may already be out of date. Child Care must be part of re-opening strategy COVID-19 amplifies existing challenges for undocumented workers, experts say Recording on YouTube:
EDI in Times of Crisis Impacts Leadership Non-Profit Sector Essential Services
Melissa, CEO of Lamson Consulting, has a Masters in Intercultural Relations. Melissa is an experienced speaker and media personality with more than 20 years of experience in human resources, leadership, manager training, and global workforce development. She has founded companies in Europe and the US, has clients and projects in over 40 countries, and has authored 6 books. She has offered companies such as 3M, LinkedIn, SAP, and Siemens the leadership tools and insights to build successful management and project teams in every corner of the world. She understands that individuals and organizations must upskill their management techniques and training to respond to an increasingly decentralized and multicultural workforce, yet time and again - she sees leadership approaching diversity and inclusion all wrong. Melissa is the author of a new book called THE NEW GLOBAL MANAGER: Learning to Manage Well in a Complex Business Environment, the book is a daily resource for managers -  providing practical tools, frameworks, strategies, and tips for successfully managing teams face-to-face and virtually.Through our interview, Melissa will help listeners understand common mistakes, learn the strategies that have the greatest impact, discover ways to get buy-in for Diversity and Inclusion initiatives and increase employee engagement.Resources:
Happy International Women's Day!On today's episode, your hosts Alicia and Marcie will discuss how careers no longer follow the traditional 'ladder' model, instead they are more like 'jungle gyms'!Alicia and Marcie will discuss their own career paths, those who have inspired them, and their hopes for the future in terms of their own careers and societies they work in. Resources mentioned:Alicia Bjarnason Hawranik Geography and Feminist Science Studies Links Massey Waring Studies, Political Science, Justice and Human Rights https://www.maxwell.syr.edu Clinton Ardern Marin
Today’s Guest:Robyn Hanson is a communications professional who thrives when stepping out of her comfort zone. She holds a Public Relations diploma, a Bachelor of Professional Arts in Communications degree, and a Masters of Education. Robyn is committed to educating others on ADHD to help reduce the stigma attached to the condition. Resources: YouTubeEssential Ideas for Parents: Dr. Russell Barkley ( to ADHD: YouTube personality JessicaMcCabe ( ( and Adults with ADHD ( ADD ( for Smart A** Women ( for Workplaces.Workplaces can...allow employees to wear headphones for listening to music or white noiseoffer swing spaces for conversations or deep reading where there are no distractionsemploy scheduled blocks of uninterrupted time during the day where the phone is set on do not disturb and e-mail notifications are blocked offer sit stand desksencourage exercise during lunch hoursencourage doing tasks that are mini movement breaks, like walking to a co-workers desk rather than picking up the phone and using the stairs rather than the elevatorencourage people to write notes during meetings  to reduce impulsive interruptingemploy Post-It planning to map out ideas visually partner employees for projectsNotable People with ADHDRichard Branson - Founder of the Virgin GroupJim Carrey, Zooey Deschanel, Ryan Gosling, and Emma Watson - ActorsMichael Phelps and Simone Biles - OlympiansAdam Levine - MusicianEd Hallowell - Harvard PsychiatristLisa Ling - Journalist
Unconscious Bias has been the most popular equity, diversity and inclusion training over the last couple of years. However, if the training is not designed correctly, the efforts have been known to actually resulted in more harm than good and in a backlash amongst participants and between employees. The last thing companies want to do is introduce an EDI topic to their organization - where people are already pretty hesitant to accept EDI – and then end up amplifying or accelerating biases!In this week's episode, your hosts Alicia and Marcie will be discussing basics on the topic as well as what to look for in a good training package. If your company is looking for Unconscious Bias training, please contact us. We would be happy to support you. Our training includes a proven tool kit and customized case studies to help companies find a way for the training to work for them! Resources: -
Today's discussion includes unique career journeys, the power of networking and crisis leadership with Gitane De Silva. Gitane previously served as Alberta’s Deputy Minister of International and Intergovernmental Relations, she also worked in Canada’s Foreign Service for over a decade specializing in Canada-U.S. relations. She had held various posts in the U.S. including Consul General of Canada in Chicago and Head of the Environment and Fisheries section at the Canadian Embassy in Washington. She has also worked as Director of Canada-U.S. Advocacy and Mission Liaison and Director of U.S. Transboundary Affairs at Foreign Affairs, Trade and Development Canada in Ottawa. In January 2016, Gitane was appointed Alberta’s Representative to the U.S. in Washington, D.C. where she led Alberta’s trade and diplomatic work in the U.S. and led Alberta’s Washington Office. Gitane is now back in Alberta, based in Calgary, Advising the Department of Energy.
A discussion with Gillian HynesGillian is a Senior HR leader at Shell Canada with Talent Strategy expertise, and has worked, lived and travelled throughout the Americas, Europe and Asia. In her current role as a Global Manager Talent, Downstream for Shell she is responsible for delivering world-class outcomes for leadership development, expertise in Future of Work, and the creation and implementation of innovative Talent and D&I Strategy. Her forward-thinking and innovative approach results in robust people and business performance.  In addition to Shell, she is involved in several community initiatives. With the belief that the Future of Work is deeply rooted in STEM, Gillian is on the Board of Directors for the Alberta Science Network helping to make science fun and meaningful for kids of all ages. As an Ask Her Association Board Member, she supports and empowers women, helping to increase the number of women on Calgary’s City Council. Gillian is al passionate about advancing the HR profession and have recently joined the board of CPHR Alberta. Gillian has an MBA from Queens University, a Bachelor of Commerce from the University of Calgary and a Certificate in Social Impact from Queens University. She also holds her CPHR designation. Gillian is also a recent award winner of the Young Women in Energy Awards to recognize and reward Albertans who go above and beyond to change the face of energy.Resources:
We have heard many debriefings on last weeks federal election, but none have been through an EDI lens. We will discuss topics including: - Who were the target audiences of each federal campaign - What topics were missed, such as women and indigenous concerns- How can we increase the female presence in all levels of politics- What is the difference between being an Ally and a Saviour - What is Wexit and who's voices are being forgottenResources on topics discussed:
This special episode was recorded Live! on October 4th in Edmonton Alberta, at the Working the Intersections of Gender Conference. Our special guest was Dr. Amy Kaler. Dr. Kaler has a PhD in Sociology and Feminist Studies from the University of Minnesota, followed by a postdoctoral fellowship in Population Studies at the University of Pennsylvania. She has a Master of Arts in Administration and Policy Studies in Education, a Diploma in Teaching English as a Second Language, and a Bachelor of Arts in English Literature, all from McGill University. She has received the Faculty of Arts Research Excellence Award at both the assistant professor and associate professor levels. Dr. Kaler’s substantive research has focused on sexual and reproductive health (especially HIV/AIDS and fertility control) in sub-Saharan Africa, with particular attention to the cultural, social and institutional dimensions of public health interventions. She is interested in the dynamics of broad economic transformation and rural household survival in Africa, and in the evolving functions of international development and humanitarian assistance. She has worked in Zimbabwe, Malawi, Uganda, South Africa, Ethiopia and South Sudan with an international array of colleagues in public health, agriculture, demography and religious studies, and have done historical work in Canada. Her work has been primarily qualitative, with an emphasis on open-ended interviews, personal narratives and textual analysis. More broadly, Dr. Kaler is interested in the unintended consequences of social change. What are the unexpected and unanticipated results of the things we do to improve our lives and the world around us? She is interested in how people imagine the worlds they live in. What ideas, values and visions do we use to interpret experiences and to strategize our own actions, both individually and collectively? She currently teaches undergraduate courses in the sociology of gender, family studies, population, and international development. She teaches graduate courses in gender and family. Her students at both undergraduate and graduate levels have come from sociology, anthropology, political science, women's and gender studies, English and film studies, rural sociology, nursing, public health, geography and anthropology.
Resources: Rigg, L.S., B. Coller, J.F. Reynolds, A. Levin, and C. McCord (2015) Academic career Satisfaction: The role of gender and discipline. Journal of Women and Minorities in Science and Engineering: 21(2): 125-40Rigg, L.S., S. McCarragher, and A.J. Krmenec. (2012) Authorship, Collaboration, and Gender: fifteen years of publication productivity in selected geography journals."), Professional Geographer. 64(4): 491-502NSERC, (2017) Women in Science and Engineering in Canada: Waterhouse, Women in Innovation: Eight behavioural nudges to keep moving the dial forward. Download full report: (2018), Diversity Disclosure Practices: Women in leadership roles at TSX-listed companies. Download full report: Dimensions Program:
Through a Feminist Geography lens, today's episode will explore the concept of gendered space and how this affects working environments, such as the resource sector in Alberta. Episode Resouces : Bjarnason, Alicia D. 2018. A Space of their Own? A feminist exploration of gendered spatial relations in Professional Women’s Organizations in Alberta's Resource Sector. (Masters of Arts), University of Calgary, Calgary., John W. 2013. Qualitative Inquiry and Research Design 3rd Edition. University of Nebraska, Lincoln: SAGE Publications Ltd. Hanson, Susan., and Pratt, Geraldine. 1995. Gender, Work and Space: International Studies of Women and Place. London: Routledge.Laplonge, Dean. 2014. So You Think You're Tough? Getting Serious about Gender in Mining. Australia: Factive.Massey, Doreen. 2006. “Space, Time and Political Responsibility in the Midst of Global Inequality.” Erdkunde, 60 (2):89-95.Massey, Doreen. 2004. “Geographies of Responsibility.” Geografiska Annaler, 86 (1):5-1.Massey, Doreen. 1996. “Politicizing space and place.” Scottish Geographical Magazine, 112 (2):117-123.Massey, Doreen. 1994. Space, Place and Gender. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press.McDowell, Linda. 1997. "Women/gender/feminisms: Doing feminist geography."  Journal of Geography in Higher Education, 21 (3):381-400. doi: 10.1080/03098269708725444.Rose, Gillian. 1993. Feminism & Geography: The Limits of Geographical Knowledge. Minneapolis, MN: University of Minnesota Press.Staeheli, Lynn A., Martin, Patricia M. 2000. "Spaces for Feminism in Geography."  The Annals of the American Academy of Political and Social Science, 571:135-150.
Our guest, Sydney Coleman, works on diversity, equity, and inclusion programs at Google in San Francisco. She also serves as the VP on a Board for US National Committee for UN Women San Francisco. Sydney is incredibly passionate about making the workplace, and tech industry in particular, more accessible, inclusive, and equitable for underrepresented populations.Within Alberta, female participation in the technology sector is over twice the national average and 30 per cent of tech companies in the province have a female founder or co-founder, according to a recent study by Alberta Enterprise Corporation (AEC) (Globe and Mail, June 2019). Resources: - few Canadian women/non-binary in Tech to follow:-
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