February 2015


Congress for everyone: Big Thinking, Congress Expo, Career Corner, Interdisciplinary symposia and more

Nour Aoude, Federation for the Humanities and Social Sciences

Congress is a community of learning and exchanging ideas. Even if you are not an association member, you are invited to take part in Congress and benefit from the diverse opportunities for personal and professional enrichment on offer:


Big Thinking lecture series
Hear leading scholars and public figures from around the globe present forward-thinking research, ideas and solutions to the critical questions and issues of our time. ...

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Open Social Scholarship in Canada

Alyssa Arbuckle, Assistant Director, Research Partnerships & Development, Electronics Textual Cultures Lab (ETCL), University of Victoria

Ray Siemens, Canada Research Chair in Humanities Computing and Distinguished Professor of English in the Faculty of Humanities with cross appointment in Computer Science, University of Victoria

The humanities and social sciences have moved online, and this shift has changed the way knowledge is shared between scholars, students, the public, and other aligned groups. For instance, ideas asserted in informal venues can be circulated widely via social media, and research papers can be published in electronic, open source journals accessible to all. Beyond the viral sharing capacity of the...

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A pivotal year for Canada’s engagement with global social justice

Julia Sánchez, President-CEO, Canadian Council for International Co-operation (CCIC)

February 20th is World Day of Social Justice, as recognized by the United Nations since 2007. The day is a call to observe social justice by supporting “efforts of the international community in poverty eradication, the promotion of full employment and decent work, gender equity and access to social well-being and justice for all”.  

Three events make 2015 a pivotal year for global social justice: first, there is the 20th...

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Once Again, Without Data

Jason Haslam, President, Association of Canadian College and University Teachers of English (ACCUTE)

It has become a common complaint, across the board, that statistics relating to Canadian higher education are sorely lacking or, when they do exist, are misleading–ACCUTE past-president Stephen Slemon has written about this matter on this very blog. Whether it’s in terms of faculty hiring (and of what sorts), student outcome, or relative growth in funding and expenditures between capital projects, administration, and teaching, we’re operating with few details, and often with far fewer facts to work with than our American cousins have at their disposal. Of course, we can still learn from some of those American data points, but we do have to keep the multiple different...

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Results for the Federation’s Board of Directors elections

Véronique Mallet, Federation for the Humanities and Social Sciences

The results are in!

This election marks a change in the Federation presidency. After completing her two-year term as President, Antonia Maioni will hold the position of Past-President until March 2016 and Stephen Toope ends his term as President-Elect and will be President of the Board until March 2017.

Six positions on the Board of Directors of the Federation for the Humanities and Social Sciences...

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A short history and economics lesson for Kevin O’Leary

Jean-Marc Mangin, Executive Director, Federation for the Humanities and Social Sciences

In a recent BBN interview, Kevin O`Leary offered unsubstantiated commentary about liberal arts degrees, and History degrees in particular. He stated: “…stop going for liberal arts degrees because it is useless”; “come out with a History degree, you are going to zero…”; “you can’t get employed [with a History degree], … it is impossible”; “you want to learn to make a movie, you will starve to death” and implied that, if somehow you managed to avoid death, a liberal arts degree gives you a one-way ticket to ending up on the street “…with a blanket over you, reading poetry”. With his well known bombastic style and ideological devotion to “the market”, many listeners take his commentary with a grain of salt.


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Ottawa is...

Nour Aoude, Federation for the Humanities and Social Sciences

The backdrop to Congress 2015 is none other than the nation's capital, Ottawa. Whether you are returning or visiting for the first time, I encourage you to take the opportunity to discover what Ottawa has to offer. For me, this begins with world-class galleries, museums, theatres, food, outdoor recreation and nightlife. But Ottawa's real treasure is its people—among the most educated in Canada, Ottawans combine the sophistication of the big city with the laid-back familiarity of a small community. They know their city's hidden cultural treasures, and are happy to show you around. So throw aside outdated descriptors like stodgy, pretentious, and boring, and check out a few more apt words to describe Ottawa in the great video below, made by our friends at Ottawa Tourism...

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Ottawa, ma ville bilingue: une idée inachevée

Jean-Marc Mangin, Directeur général, Fédération des sciences humaines

Camille Ferrier qui s’est jointe l’été dernier à l’équipe du Secrétariat de la Fédération a partagé récemment ses réflexions sur le caractère bilingue de l’Université d’Ottawa, du Congrès 2015 et de la ville d’Ottawa elle-même.

Il est rafraichissant de célébrer et de se faire rappeler par une nouvelle résidente d’Ottawa ce que nous avons collectivement bâti comme société pluraliste et inclusive. Une certaine harmonie et tolérance règnent : il existe un consensus social fort que le français constitue une langue officielle du pays et que nos institutions publiques doivent offrir des services en français à ses...

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Ottawa, ma ville bilingue

Camille Ferrier, Fédération des sciences humaines

On parle beaucoup du Congrès des sciences humaines pour ses conférences, son caractère pluridisciplinaire, et son impact sur la communauté locale et la société au sens large. Mais si cette 84ème édition est unique, c’est aussi parce qu’elle se déroulera dans la plus grande université bilingue au monde. C’est dans un contexte linguistique très particulier que l’Université d’Ottawa a choisi de mettre le français et l’anglais sur un pied d’égalité, pour le plus grand plaisir de nos futurs congressistes.

En effet, loin d’être nouveaux, les débats sur le bilinguisme semblent fleurir plus encore que les tulipes de mai : Ottawa...

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