Our process

The road to UBC’s Next Century will take several months. You can view a process timeline here.

The initial phase has already begun. More than 1,000 people responded to an online survey during December and January. In addition, UBC’s Deans and members of the Executive were invited to share their own thoughts on the university’s priorities and challenges.

A Steering Committee made up of UBC faculty, staff, students, alumni and community members has considered the feedback to date and proposed strategic priorities for the plan. We are seeking input on these strategic priorities via online and in-person events during March and April, 2017. As part of this consultation phase, we will also ask you what goals and actions you would like us to pursue in respect to these strategic priorities.

Once the strategic priorities have been established, we will form expert task forces to advise the Steering Committee about how we might work towards achieving them, through detailed implementation plans and carefully designed metrics.

The UBC community will be invited to comment on a draft strategic plan in the fall term prior to the plan being presented to the UBC Vancouver and UBC Okanagan Senates and the UBC Board of Governors.

UBC’s Deans and Executive team will also play an important role throughout the process. They will ensure that the priorities, goals and actions are inspirational, achievable and appropriate for UBC now and into the future.

The entire process is being overseen by Professor Santa J. Ono, President and Vice-Chancellor, with his Senior Advisor, Dr Emma Cunliffe, acting as project lead.

To assist us in handling the logistics of this complex and many-faceted process, we have engaged a dedicated team. The Napa Group is highly experienced in this area.

In addition, we are ensuring that our process is aligned with UBC’s engagement principles. These principles create a clarity and transparency to how we define, design, implement and conclude public engagement in our community planning processes. The principles were created through consultation with a wide range of partners including campus stakeholders, student government and First Nations.

Strategic Planning Engagement Process

Process timeline

Phase 1 – Project Planning (January 2017)
Phase 2 – Visioning, Listening, Environmental Scan (February 2017)
Phase 3 – Engagement and Consultation (March-May 2017)
Phase 4 – Business Plan and Implementation Framework (May-September 2017)
Phase 5 – Draft Plan (September-November 2017)
Phase 6 – Plan Approval and Implementation Launch (November-December 2017)

Progress to date

Thanks to all of you who have submitted comments to date, whether through the initial online survey, via the website or during our Facebook Live event. Please find below a summary of what we’ve heard so far:

Thanks to all of you who shared your thoughts on the draft vision statement. Your feedback will be shared with the Steering Committee.

Draft priorities

1. Local/Regional/Global
As a public research university located in the diverse province of British Columbia, Canada, and as North America’s most international university, we are ideally positioned to embrace internationalization as an ethos. This strategic priority would foster learning and scholarship that equips people to live and work in diverse local, regional and global communities while engaging with the complexities of international relations.

2. Working Across Disciplines
The big challenges society faces today do not come neatly packaged in disciplinary categories.  This strategic priority would foster trans-disciplinary learning opportunities, interdisciplinary scholarship and knowledge mobilization, while identifying and addressing institutional barriers to inter-disciplinarity.

3. Creativity, Innovation and Risk Taking
UBC is already recognized by its peers as a university that is willing to be creative, to take risks and to innovate. This strategic priority would foster and reward innovation, creativity and risk-taking among students, faculty and staff while supporting collaboration with external partners.

4. Engagement and Reciprocity
The strategic priority emphasizes connections and relationships between UBC’s work and the communities and societies in which we live. This strategic priority would foster engaged research, learning opportunities and knowledge exchange.

5. Our Community and Wellbeing
Cultivating physical and mental wellbeing amongst our students, faculty, staff and community is crucial to our success as a university. This strategic priority focuses on building strong and inclusive communities on our campuses and beyond, and on institutional initiatives that support our people to achieve their full potential.

6. Sustainability
Our 2009 Strategic plan, Place and Promise, committed all aspects of the University—its infrastructure, research, teaching and learning elements—to exploring and exemplifying social, economic and environmental sustainability. In our initial survey, you told us that you are proud of what we have achieved in respect to sustainability, and that you would like UBC to continue to pursue this strategic priority.

7. Indigeneity
The Aboriginal Strategic Plan adopted as part of Place and Promise reflected UBC’s commitment to Aboriginal education, respect for Aboriginal knowledge and cultures, and resolution to build upon the strengths of the university to more fully address the needs of Aboriginal and Indigenous communities in British Columbia, Canada, and the world. In our initial survey, you told us that our commitment to these principles differentiates UBC from other major research universities, and that we should build on these principles, especially in light of the work of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada.

8. Diversity
UBC’s success depends upon being an inclusive and welcoming place for all people. This strategic priority promotes inclusivity of all people regardless of sexual orientation, gender expression, racial and ethnic background, family status, ability, or national origin. It focuses attention on intercultural dialogue and diversity in scholarship, learning and institutional activities.

These eight strategic priorities are important to our four core institutional activities:

  1. Teaching and learning
  2. Research and scholarship
  3. Knowledge mobilization
  4. Institutional activities

Steering committee members

The Steering Committee is made up of faculty, staff, students and alumni. See a complete list of members (PDF).

Do you have a question about the strategic planning process? Email info.strategicplan@ubc.ca