Sex, Gender and Health Research

There is significant evidence to demonstrate that biological and social differences between women and men contribute to differences in their health. Sex (biological attributes) and gender (socio-cultural factors) influence our risk of developing certain diseases, how well we respond to medical treatments, and how often we seek health care. Accounting for sex and gender in health research has the potential to make health research more rigorous, more reproducible and more applicable to everyone.

CIHR is a signatory on the Government of Canada's Health Portfolio Sex- and Gender-Based Analysis Policy, as well as the Tri-Council Policy Statement on Ethical Conduct for Research Involving Humans. Both policies underscore the importance of integrating sex and gender into health research when appropriate. As such, CIHR expects that all research applicants will integrate gender and sex into their research designs when appropriate.

CIHR's Sex and Gender-Based Analysis (SGBA) in Research Action Plan ensures that health research in Canada leads to sound science and reliable evidence that effectively addresses biological (sex) and sociocultural (gender and other identity factors) differences between diverse groups of people.

How to integrate sex and gender into research

Get better equipped to integrate sex and gender

Impacts of integrating sex and gender in research

Uncover the opportunities for discovery and innovation of integrating sex and gender

How CIHR is supporting the integration of SGBA

Learn about CIHR’s Sex and Gender-Based Analysis in Research Action Plan

Progress Update: SGBA in Action at CIHR

Learn how CIHR is meeting its commitments to SGBA

We want to hear from you: if you have suggestions on how we can enhance the integration of sex and gender at CIHR, please contact us at

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