Media Releases

Congress 2013 delivers big ideas

With more than 7,600 delegates over 9,000 tweets, Congress keeps growing

June 11, 2013, Victoria, BC—More than 7,600 academics, researchers, students and policy-makers descended upon Victoria this week for the 2013 Congress of the Sciences and Humanities, bringing an estimated $9- $12 million into the local economy.  

Congress 2013 kicked off with a major funding announcement from the Honourable Gary Goodyear, Minister of State for Science and Technology: $167 million for projects funded by the Social Science and Humanities Research Council (SSHRC).

Once again Congress’ marquee event – the Big Thinking lectures – were a success as delegates packed the auditoriums and praised several speakers with standing ovations. The Big Thinking lectures have become a must-attend event and this year was no exception as delegates were eager to hear from such notable speakers as Louise Arbour, Daniel Weinstock and Doug Saunders.

With more than 9,000 tweets since the start of Congress, we’ve successfully engaged both the academic and the local community in this exciting event.

More than 50 exhibitors participated in Congress, as well as nearly 70 associations encompassing the social sciences and humanities—disciplines including literature, theatre, sociology, geography, education, population studies, and much more.

“We owe a huge vote of thanks to the University of Victoria community for this exceptional festival of arts and ideas. Our success is their success” said Antonia Maioni, President of the Federation for the Humanities and Social Sciences, organizers of Congress. “Congress is a national institution grounded in the learning and research work that has taken place in Victoria. This partnership would not have been possible without the leadership of Dr. David Turpin [President of the University of Victoria] and his team”.

More than 300 researchers were available for interviews on a wide variety of topics (arts, digital, education, environment, health, international affairs and politics). Presenters were interviewed by the media on a wide range of issues including mental health in the classroom, growing tensions and conflict between countries and increasing parliamentary representation for minorities.

All of the Big Thinking lectures can be viewed on the Federation’s YouTube channel, and the Congress website has countless blog posts and tweets from throughout the eight days of the conference:


For more information:

Laura Markle
Federation for the Humanities and Social Sciences
613-238-6112, ext. 351


Mélanie Béchard
Federation for the Humanities and Social Sciences
613-238-6112, ext. 303


About Congress:

Organized by the Federation for the Humanities and Social Sciences, Congress is the largest interdisciplinary conference in Canada. Described as a “conference of conferences,” Congress involves nearly 70 academic associations that represent a rich spectrum of disciplines in the humanities and social sciences, including literature, history, theatre, film studies, education, music, sociology, geography, social work and many others.