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DR. SALIMA BHIMANI

Founder and Director of Diversity, Equity, Inclusion

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Salima has over 20 years of experience as a dynamic researcher, educator, consultant and policy shaper, working with NGOs, government, educational institutions, and community organizations globally. Leading and collaborating on projects in North America, Europe, the Middle East and South Asia her work focuses on building processes that transform social challenges and meet the hopes and needs of social minorities. Working with people, lived realities, systems of society, in concert with a range of scholarship has meant that her consulting, strategies, projects, research and educational approaches reflect a multipronged and sophisticated entry into addressing social challenges.

 

Salima has been at the center of shaping diversity, equity and inclusion institutional policies and practices with a range of stakeholders over the past 15 years. She’s conducted needs assessments, research projects and developed policy frameworks and programming on diversity, equity and inclusion. She has also evaluated existing policies and programming that seek to meet specific diversity, equity and inclusion objectives, providing recommendations on implementing more robust and clear language and institutional practices. She’s informed direct action and strategies for designing and implementing resources, institutional supports, staffing changes and professional development that model and reflect equity, inclusion and accessibility principles. Her work has shaped how institutional leaders design and envision all aspects of their diversity and inclusion goals.

 

Over the last 15 years, Salima has become an expert in a range of qualitative research methods, including ethnography, interviewing, focus groups, surveys, virtual research, and discourse analysis. Designing, leading and implementing many short and long terms research projects from beginning to end, the outcomes of her research has always shown real life implications and clear strategies and recommendations. In many of these projects, she’s worked in Canada and the USA addressing issues such as social exclusion, community development, equitable and inclusive institutions and relationships, racial barriers, civic participation, on-line social movements and gender justice. She’s also worked on research concerned with educational and institutional accessibility for vulnerable communities across many countries in the global south. As part of her consultancy work she has provided training on research design, methods, implementation and analysis.

 

Salima has also managed many small to large scale projects and programs over 10 years. For instance, she managed a program and developed projects providing mentorship for Afghan women refugees. As a program officer she designed and implemented projects addressing racial profiling of black youth and creating accessible funding avenues for minority artists and arts organizations. She’s also designed and implemented gender justice projects addressing violence against women, educational and economic barriers for women and developing the capacity and leadership of minority individuals, especially racialized women and communities. Her expertise has also led her to design and lead projects for governments and institutions looking to remove systemic barriers for particular social minority groups.

 

Over the course of the last 20 years Salima’s work as an educator has directly focused on the widest range of diversity, equity, inclusion and social justice issues. She is therefor intimately knowledgeable in scholarship in these areas, along with research and best practices. Salima has published in a range of places like scholarly journals to magazines. Her first book on Muslim women and representation was published in 2003. She is now working on a book manuscript examining diversity encounters to be published by the University of British Columbia Press.

 

She has taught and trained youth and adults in formal and informal educational spaces such as in high schools, colleges and universities, NGO’s and governments in the USA, Canada and South Asia. She is an expert in intersectional analysis and approaches with a focus on gender, racial, sexuality, ethnic, religious, and ability differences. She has developed curriculum for and facilitated more than 3000 hours of learning. She’s developed pedagogical approaches that mentor individuals and groups and model equity and inclusion practices, thinking and engagement.

 

As an artist Salima has used theatre and dance to bring forward marginalized and untold stories. She has written and mounted several productions in the past.

Her degrees include:

  • PhD in Education with a focus on issues of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion
  • Her doctoral ethnographic study showed the social and political outcomes of encounters between religious and ethnic minorities and other citizens, systems and policies of multicultural nation-states
  • Master of Environmental Studies with a focus in gender, representation and globalization
  • Bachelor of Education, Secondary Panel in the Social Sciences and Humanities
  • Honors Bachelors in Women and Gender Studies and Anthropology.
  • Salima’s work grows out of social change praxis, symbiotic community building and ethical social innovation. She is also conversant in Guajarati and Hindi languages. She is the recipient of the Women Who Inspire Award.