Federation news

Remembering Stephen Clarkson: Public intellectual, teacher and scholar

Mel Watkins, Professor Emeritus, Department of Economics, University of Toronto

Stephen Clarkson was my colleague and friend for more than 50 years. Gracious and congenial, he was an intensely private person.

He was a legendary teacher who could give a polished lecture without notes. I taught a course with him for many years and he set the bar high. He was much respected by students, who gave him high evaluations.

He was a prolific researcher and writer who received many awards. Fittingly, indefatigable at 78, still not retired and with serious health problems, he was in Portugal on a research tour with students when he fell fatally ill. He died on the go, students in his wake, with pen in hand.

He was proficient in English, French, Spanish, German,...

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Budget 2016 signals important research and innovation discussions coming in 2016

 

Here at the Federation, we’ve been picking apart the 2016 federal budget and also keeping an eye out for what our colleagues are saying. There seems to be a solid consensus growing: March 22 was a good day for Canadian scholarship in its many forms.

The Federation’s overall impressions are articulated in our post-budget media release, and a detailed analysis of the budget is available in our 2016 budget briefing note. The following is a brief overview of a few key topics, including issues that we feel are likely to be highly relevant in the coming year.

The 2015 Liberal election platform had no specific promises relating to research funding, so it was a welcome surprise to see a funding increase of $95 million split between the...

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Pre-budget 2016 submission: The Federation calls for investments in research, in student mobility, and to support reconciliation with Aboriginal peoples

In this year’s budget season, the Federation is urging the federal government to make significant investments to support scholarly research, student mobility and reconciliation between Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal Canadians through the postsecondary system.

Each year, the Federation submits a set of recommendations to the federal government through the annual budget consultation process. Our recommendations are designed to reflect the priorities of Canada’s social scientists and humanities scholars, and also to support public policies that benefit all Canadians.

Our recommendations for 2016 are based on the understanding that Canadians face growing challenges in the 21st century, such as adapting to technological change, creating jobs in an increasingly knowledge-driven economy, reducing carbon emissions and building social inclusion. As a response to these challenges, we are making the following recommendations:

Invest in research:...

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Transforming our relationship with members: Launching Strategic Plan 2016-2020

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

Read Strategic Plan 2016-2020.

Many in the academic community view strategic planning with some degree of skepticism. Either full of motherhood statements and/or written in bureaucratese, many critics do not observe significantly altered organizational behavior and performance from the adoption of strategic plans. The Federation has just completed the execution of its 2011-2015 strategic plan. What has changed? How did we do when compared with our goals? Pretty well, I would venture to say: out of 17 strategic goals, the key operational objectives...

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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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What are we telling students about the value of the humanities and social sciences?

Nour Aoude, Federation for the Humanities and Social Sciences

Our daily work at the Federation is a reminder of how important the humanities and social sciences are to our success as an innovative and democratic society. We know very well that, without the self-reflection and criticism provided by the SSH, our public life and policy-making would be much impoverished.

But is this message being communicated effectively to young people who are deciding what to do next? Are there resources available to high school students explaining the value of a university degree? Do university students understand the important role that the SSH can play in their education?

With some effort, we have managed to find excellent resources for high school and university students. Below are some of our...

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Nominations are open for the Federation’s Board of Directors

Véronique Mallet, Federation for the Humanities and Social Sciences

Nominations open today, Tuesday, January 6, 2015 for seven positions on the Board of Directors of the Federation for the Humanities and Social Sciences. The open positions are:

  • Director, Research Policy
  • Director, Research Dissemination
  • Director, Institutions (2 positions)
  • Director, Associations (2 positions)

Please note that the Board of Directors will also nominate a Treasurer, as per the Federation’s Governance Policy. If you are interested in this position and would like you candidacy to be considered, please contact Véronique Mallet.

Nominations can be made by current General Assembly...

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SSH News: Research universities come together to promote SSH, humanities degrees provide great return on investment, SSH students less vulnerable to job booms and busts

Research universities promote the social sciences and humanities

A network of global research universities, including the U15 Group of Canadian Research Universities, has come together to discuss the important role of the SSH in tackling the world’s most pressing challenges. The initiative, kickstarted by the League of European Research Universities (LERU), calls for an expanded role for the social sciences and humanities in tackling problems through interdisciplinary research.

Humanities degrees provide great return on investment

According to an article by Jeffrey Dorfman in Forbes...

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The ASPP en vedette at the Salon du livre de Montréal

Jessica Clark, Federation for the Humanities and Social Sciences

Last Friday, it was my privilege once again to attend the Salon du livre de Montréal on behalf of the Federation and the Awards to Scholarly Publications Program (ASPP). The Salon is a paradise for book nerds of all persuasions, this girl included! As always, I enjoyed soaking in the bright colours of the booths, mountains of gorgeous books, and the frisson of energy that permeates the hall. After a little browsing I turned my attention to my main purpose for attending the Salon this year.

We were very fortunate to have arranged...

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SSH News: World Philosophy Day, Bartha Knoppers named Grande Montréalaise, recession sends graduates back to school according to study

World Philosophy Day

November 20 is World Philosophy Day, an initiative by UNESCO. The event has been celebrated since 2002. This year’s theme is “Social Transformation and Intercultural Dialogue”. Programmed events for the day, as well as suggestions for how everyone can join the celebration can be found here.

Big Thinking speaker Bartha Knoppers in media

Bartha Knoppers, McGill University professor and Director of the Centre for Genomics and Policy makes the...

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