The University of Guelph will hold several events on campus on March 8 to mark International Women’s Day, an annual event that celebrates the many achievements of women and calls for action to accelerate women’s equality around the world.
Anne Innis Dagg, the pioneering Canadian wildlife scientist who spent much of her career advocating for gender equality, will provide a keynote address at an event for invited guests in the McLaughlin Library.
Dr. Jennifer Geddes-McAllister, a professor in the Department of Molecular and Cellular Biology, will also speak about her experience as a woman in science and academia. The founder of the Moms in Proteomics initiative, Geddes-McAllister will highlight progress and current challenges for women in the field.
Dagg is well-known in the wildlife research community as a pioneer in giraffe research and conservation and was the first documented person to study any wild animal behaviour in Africa.
Dagg was also the subject of 2018’s The Woman Who Loves Giraffes, a documentary that covered her attempts to secure tenure at three Ontario universities, including U of G.
She went on to produce more than 60 scientific papers and 24 books on both biology and feminism, including 1988’s MisEducation: Women and Canadian Universities.
U of G president Dr. Charlotte Yates issued a formal apology in 2018 for Dagg’s treatment by the institution in the 1970s and reiterated U of G’s strong commitment to gender equity.
An annual summer research assistantship in the College of Biological Science awarded to a woman undergraduate majoring in zoology or biodiversity now bears Dagg’s name.
In January, a travelling exhibit highlighting Dagg’s research and fight for gender equality was installed in the McLaughlin Library. It features several of Dagg’s personal artifacts from her childhood to her research years, as well as some of her poems and letters on gender roles.
Special collections librarian Melissa McAfee will discuss the exhibit during the International Women’s Day event, which will take place at 1 p.m. in the library’s Whitelaw Room.
Honouring International Women’s Day Conference
Also on March 8, the Community Engaged Scholarship Institute at U of G will host the sixth annual Honouring International Women’s Day Conference.
This free, day-long conference is open to all U of G students and staff as well as the wider community and features both in-person and online sessions.
Discussions and presentations will focus on interdisciplinary research related to the challenges faced by underrepresented and marginalized people. Register here to attend in person or here to attend virtually.