Blog

Welcome to the blog for the Federation for the Humanities and Social Sciences. Posts on this site are the opinion of the authors and do not necessarily represent the official position of the Federation, its staff or its board of directors. Entries are posted in the language of the author.

Members of the university research community are invited to make guest blog submissions on issues relating to the wellbeing of the humanities and social sciences research and learning enterprise in Canada. Click here to read the Federations’ blog policy. Please send your submission to communications@ideas-idees.ca.

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“A degree will help you get ahead” – so many young Canadians have been told. But with crippling debt and high tuition costs, the cost of getting post-secondary education can become higher than the benefits.

And, as Roseann O’Reilly Runte points out in a recent Globe and Mail piece, these disincentives for attending post-secondary education actually end up hurting society as a whole. President of Carleton University, Dr. Runte argues that without access to education, our world would be “a hotbed of strife.” Education, on the other hand, promotes civic engagement and connections to the community, leading to richer experiences and better wellbeing for students and community members alike.

While Canada has excellent education available, Dr. Runte calls for continued support in providing access to education. In turn, she argues...

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Immigrant Women, Equality and Diversity in Canada

Alexandra Dobrowolsky, Saint Mary’s University
Guest Contributor

This blog post is part of the Federation Equity Portfolio’s ‘Equality Then and Now’ series, marking 40 years since the Royal Commission on the Status of Women.

The drafters of the Royal Commission on the Status of Women (RCSW) deliberately chose to write about the inequalities facing Canadian women in general, strategically focusing on the major social, economic and political struggles women in Canada experienced as a whole.  By doing so,...

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EnGendering Changes in Unpaid Work in Canada

Kathleen Lahey, Queen's University
Guest Contributor

As discussions about reasonable ‘compromises’ around census issues coalesce, the government actually may end up ‘winning’ on its drive to exclude all non-business-related unpaid work from the 2011 census. Only unpaid activities relating to travel, to work and helping in someone else’s business will be counted.

With the removal of just one question (33) – pertaining to unpaid activities with seniors, children, and for self and household – Canadian policymakers and the Canadian public are losing valuable knowledge about how Canadian society...

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Catch up on your Big Thinking this summer

Summer is a great time to catch up on that reading list that eludes you the rest of the year - be it refreshing your memory of Kant or devouring the latest Stieg Larsson thriller. This final month of summer would also be a great time to catch up on the Big Thinking lectures you might have missed at this year's Congress of the Humanities and Social Sciences. We've uploaded many of the lectures to the Experience Congress website. You can download the MP3 or listen directly from the website. While you're there, why not poke around the other great video, audio...

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Social Sciences and Humanities Key to Digital Economy

Daniel Paul O’Donnell, Federation member and Co-President of the Society for the Digital Humanities wrote an op ed piece in the Edmonton Journal this week discussing the role that the humanities and social sciences have in the development of Canada’s digital economy. According to O’Donnell, “What makes the new digital economy so exciting and so different from what came before is the emphasis it places on problems humanists and social scientists have always studied: organization and communication; finding the balance between the group and the individual; and producing, disseminating and sharing cultural work.”

O’Donnell’s comments are timely given that the government’s digital economy consultation has just closed. As a country we need to ensure that perspectives from across the full spectrum of disciplines are able to contribute to innovation...

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