Guy Laforest, President, Federation for the Humanities and Social Sciences
It’s important to keep your promises. Since taking on the role as President of the Federation, my number one priority has been to build a closer, more collaborative relationship with our members. The organization made a strong commitment to improve member engagement in its 2016-2020 Strategic Plan, and it is a commitment I plan to uphold in my tenure over the next 18 months.
In my first six months, I have been actively listening and learning about member needs, looking for ways to improve the work we do:
- as a voice in Ottawa for scholars,
- as the organizer of the Congress of the Humanities and Social Sciences, and
- as a provider of programs and services that benefit our community.
While we do these things well, I believe we can do them even better.
In the next 18 months, members can expect to see changes.
- In our advocacy work, we will undertake a major new project to better articulate the value of the humanities and social sciences to Canadians.
- With respect to Congress, we will make improvements in the member experience.
- We will help more of our scholars publish their books by renewing the relationship with the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council and looking for ways to better profile and evolve the Awards to Scholarly Publishing Program.
- We will continue to expand outreach to all members, and improve our service offering, stepping up and expanding our programs and services.
- In the area of reconciliation with Indigenous peoples, we will continue to support the journey, working with associations and universities to take up the calls to action of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission.
We have our work cut out for us!
Together we will succeed because we believe deeply in the potential for humanities and social sciences to contribute meaningfully to fundamental questions about the nature of human agency, the importance of freedom, and the role of education in a flourishing, bilingual and multicultural society.