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.

What you need to know about Congress 2018 calls for papers

Ghassen Athmni, Communications Officer, Federation for the Humanities and Social Sciences

With more than 5,000 research papers and lectures presented each year, the Congress of the Humanities and Social Sciences is a must-attend event for academics.

The winter season is the time of the year when most of the Congress programming is being developed. It is natural that calls for papers are among the most important deadlines of this period.

Researchers wishing to present at Congress 2018, which will take place from May 26 to June 1 in Regina, must submit their abstracts and proposals in respsonse to their associations’ calls for papers.

Given the size of Congress and the diverse audiences that attend the numerous conferences therein, researchers should gear their presentations in language accessible to as many attendees as possible.

Some conferences will be open to...

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Graduate student awards

André Magnan, Congress 2018 Academic Convener and Associate Professor of Sociology at the University of Regina

Graduate students are the lifeblood of universities. Their energy and creativity help research programs thrive – so it’s vital students seize upon opportunities to publicly present their research.

On a student budget, this can be tough. But I also know that Congress is worth it.

In 2003 I attended my first Congress in Halifax as a PhD student studying sociology. While my department provided me with some funds to make the trip, I covered most of the bill myself.

Despite the costs, Congress was my first big conference presentation and was unlike anything I’d ever experienced. I met peers from across Canada, presented my research to respected scholars, received valuable feedback...

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Members come first

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...
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On the Side of the Angels: Canada and the United Nations Commission on Human Rights

Guest blog by Andrew S. Thompson, Adjunct Assistant Professor of Political Science at the University of Waterloo

Otto Von Bismark once famously remarked that: “If you like laws and sausages, you should never watch either one being made.” I respectfully disagree. I first decided to write On the Side of the Angels: Canada and the United Nations Commission on Human Rights because I wanted to better understand the diplomacy behind international human rights law – the how and why the sausages are made, not just the final outcome or the what. As a constructive middle power and liberal democracy committed to multilateralism, Canada seemed like an obvious actor – the who – to investigate. I...

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We need a better understanding of ‘good’ research impacts

Paul Benneworth, Senior Researcher, Center for Higher Education Policy Studies, University of Twente, the Netherlands

My starting point is to welcome the recently published Federation for the Humanities and Social Sciences report, Approaches to assessing impact in the Humanities and Social Sciences as a valuable addition to a growing policy understanding of the diversity of ways in which humanities and social sciences research (HSS) creates societal impact. It matches what has been found elsewhere by the British Academy in the UK, the AWTI in the Netherlands...

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