Building an Inclusive Life Sciences Future


Life Sciences Ontario (LSO) and Shift Health are pleased to present ‘Building an Inclusive Life Sciences Future’, a series of workshops aimed at developing a vision and action plan for inclusion, diversity, equity and accessibility (IDEA) within Canada’s life sciences ecosystem.

Stakeholders across the life sciences sector have publicly committed to embedding IDEA within their organizations. While progress has been made, initiatives are often fragmented, limited in scope and inconsistently applied across the sector. There is a need for coordinated, sector-wide, action-oriented strategies and approaches critical to embedding IDEA within organizational practices, cultures, and research and innovation systems. A commitment to embedding IDEA within the ecosystem today will enable a stronger and more competitive Canada in the future.

Click here to view the summary report for “Workshop 1: Uncovering Inclusion, Diversity, Equity and Accessibility Challenges to Drive Action in Ontario’s Life Sciences Sector”

LSO and Shift Health hosted the first BILSF workshop on December 2nd, 2021, bringing the life sciences community together to align on key IDEA challenges within the sector. The outputs of this workshop will be built upon through ongoing engagement with the life sciences community, with the ultimate goal of developing a plan that defines actions that stakeholders in the sector can undertake to address the sector’s most pressing IDEA challenges.

Call for Steering Committee Members

BILSF has been guided by a Steering Committee  with diverse representation across the life sciences ecosystem—including IDEA thought leaders, individuals with lived experience and/or from marginalized communities, students, trainees and early-career professionals—to ensure this effort is relevant to all members of the life sciences sector.

Community engagement and community leadership are at the heart of Building an Inclusive Life Sciences Future. To continue to ensure that this effort is relevant to all members of the life sciences community, we are seeking additional Steering Committee members and would like to explore your interest in joining the Committee, bringing your leadership and lived experience to help guide and shape our efforts. We welcome and encourage applications from all genders, people who identify as LGBTQ2S+, members of racialized and minoritized groups, Indigenous Peoples, people with diverse abilities, and others. Accommodations are available.

We expect that the initial commitment will require approximately 40-50 hours of your time over the next 10-12 months, for which we will be pleased to offer an honorarium.  As a member of the Steering Committee, you will:

  1. Attend 8-10 Steering Committee meetings;
  2. Provide input on the objectives and structure of the next community event (i.e. workshop), including speakers/panelists, session format; and
  3. Review relevant content (e.g. pre-reads/pre-work, presentation materials, workshop summary).

Your expertise will instrumentally help us to deliver an impactful experience and chart a path forward to uplift IDEA across the life sciences ecosystem. If you are interested in participating, please fill out the form here  by August 23rd, 2022.

We look forward to hearing from you.

Meet the Steering Committee 

Click here to meet the BILSF Steering Committee

Partner Organizations

Life Sciences Ontario (LSO) is a not-for-profit organization that represents and promotes Ontario’s vibrant and diverse life sciences sector. Members of LSO include life sciences companies, entrepreneurs, members of academia, and service providers from many different areas of the life sciences ecosystem, including biopharmaceuticals, agriculture, agri-food, the bioeconomy, medical devices, animal health, environmental technologies, and more. Ultimately, LSO’s mission is to encourage commercial success throughout this diverse sector by collaborating with governments, academia, industry and other life sciences organizations in Ontario and across Canada. For more information, visit

Shift Health brings a science mindset to strategy consulting for the health research and innovation ecosystem. Working with governments, academia, industry, not-for-profits, healthcare providers and patient partners across Canada and around the world, Shift Health is helping to create the future of healthcare. For more information, visit: 

Stryker is one of the world’s leading medical technology companies and, together with our customers, is driven to make healthcare better. We offer innovative products and services in Orthopaedics, Medical and Surgical, and Neurotechnology and Spine that help improve patient and hospital outcomes. For more information, visit:

As part of the world’s largest and most broadly-based healthcare company (comprised of Consumer Health, Pharmaceuticals and Medical Devices), we are committed to using our reach and size for good every day. For more information, visit:

Founded in 1918, the CNIB Foundation is a non-profit organization driven to change what it is to be blind today. We deliver innovative programs and powerful advocacy that empower people impacted by blindness to live their dreams and tear down barriers to inclusion. Our work as a blind foundation is powered by a network of volunteers, donors and partners from coast to coast to coast. For more information, visit:

Co-sponsored by LSO and Shift Health, Building an Inclusive Life Sciences Future has also received generous support from the Canadian Institutes of Health Research.