Chair, Dr. Bruce Muirhead Associate Vice President, External Research

Indigenization Strategy Research Working Group

The mandate of the Indigenization strategy research working group is to make recommendations to broaden and deepen research practices at Waterloo – to familiarize faculty with an Indigenous paradigm and practices which might differ from those normally pursued across the University. The working group is conscious that Indigenous Ways of Knowing have been rendered largely invisible by an emphasis on what might be called a Western research model. Its recommendations will suggest methods to provide shape and direction to Indigenous research methodologies and practices, not to supplant Western-based research practices but to add to them. This initiative will be directed by the Office of Research through close consultation with all Faculties.

In order to do so, the working group will consult extensively with the Indigenous community to more accurately reflect its values and culture. Broadening and deepening research practices means becoming more respectful of Indigenous Ways of Knowing and cultural protocols and how they must, in certain cases, inform research practices at Waterloo. It also means encouraging more robust collaboration with Indigenous communities with respect to research, based on mutually-beneficial exchange, as well as enhanced concentration, where appropriate, on Indigenous topics.

Clearly, the working group’s recommendations will be ambitious in terms of charting a way forward with respect to placing Indigenous research strategies in the mainstream of those promoted at the University. It is anticipated that this will be a longer-term program, necessitating a shift in cultural attitudes at the University more broadly to be more receptive to Indigenous research methodologies. Indeed, the working group’s recommendations are merely the first step in an on-going program designed to place the University in the forefront of similar efforts at other institutions. 


Sandra Juutilainen, PhD

CIHR - Health Systems Impact Fellow, School of Public Health and Health Systems 

Reina Neufeldt, PhD

Assistant Professor, Department of Peace and Conflict Studies - Conrad Grebel University College

Jasmine Habib, PhD

Associate Professor, Department of Political Science and Global Governance & Faculty of Arts

Sushanta Mitra, PEng

Executive Director and Professor - Waterloo Institute for Nanotechnology

Michael Benoit

PhD Candidate, Department of Mechanical and Mechatronics Engineering

Mackenzie Martyniuk

M.Sc. Candidate, Department of Biology

Chris Read

Digital Assets Assistant, Dana Porter Library

Dan McCarthy, PhD

Associate Professor and Director, Waterloo Institute for Social Innovation and Resilience

Susan Roy, PhD

Associate Professor, Department of History

Neil F. Randall, PhD

Associate Professor and Director, The Games Institute