Funded faculty research

Populism, Suffrage and Prohibition: Causes and Consequences of the Female Vote in the Northern Plains States and Canadian Prairie Provinces, 1910-1920 - Gerard Boychuk (SSHRC)

Women standing for picture.

Why were populist electoral appeals in the early 20th century successful in some places (Alberta, North Dakota), were seriously attempted but failed in others (Montana, South Dakota, Saskatchewan)?  The project examines the novel hypothesis that this variation in the political viability of populist electoral appeals -- not adequately explained by existing accounts --  was significantly shaped by female suffrage and the different routes that northern plains states and  prairie provinces took to suffrage. In addressing the challenge of accounting for the divergent trajectories of early 20th century populism, the project reassesses the centrality of female suffrage in American and Canadian political development looking at both its causes and consequences.

The Defenders: A Short History of the United Nations Human Rights Commissioner - Andrew Thompson (SSHRC)

Andrew Thompson proile picture.

This is a four-year book project examining the role of the High Commissioner of Human Rights in advancing and protecting human rights. The book will address the challenges of standing up for human rights in a multilateral system that, despite major advances in the decades since the adoption of the UN Charter, loathes interference. The project is significant because it will serve as a response to not only the current backlash against the UN human rights system, but current liberal international order more broadly. Like so many other areas of global governance, international human rights law is being threatened by governments, both democratic and non-democratic, who see it as an unwanted constraint on their behaviour.

Keeping Fossil Fuels in the Ground: Building and Testing Comparative Theory in Major Producing States - Angela Carter (SSHRC)

Angela Carter profile picture.

Preventing extreme climate change requires rapid, deep greenhouse gas emission reductions. Given that fossil fuels are the primary global source of emissions, ambitious policy action to wind down existing, or prevent new, fossil fuel extraction is needed to attain the required scale of reductions. However, these “keep it in the ground” (KIIG) policy initiatives can be politically fraught, especially for major fossil fuel producing states that are economically dependent on this sector. Even so, over the last decade civil society movements pressing for the managed decline of fossil fuel production have intensified around the world and are consolidating in global coalitions. And national governments has begun to enact policies that might signal the beginning of a global fossil fuel production phase-out. 

Yet we lack a comprehensive theorization of how key political-economic and socio-cultural factors interact to foster KIIG initiatives. To address this gap, this project has two objectives: 1) develop an overarching explanatory model identifying the central factors contributing to KIIG policies; and 2) assess the relevance of this model in international cases by analyzing groundbreaking bans on fossil fuel extraction unfolding in Canada and in international cases, primarily Ireland, France, and New Zealand.

A Socio-Cultural Mapping of Arab-Canadian Migration, Settlement, and Integration: Collaboration, Community, Co-authorship - Jasmin Habib (SSHRC)

Jasmin profile pic

Funded by the SSHRC Partnership Development Grant, this project aims to enrich research and community-driven public policy by, for and about Arab Canadians. We have developed this as a socio-cultural mapping project, one that will take the first steps to developing the infrastructure needed to promote communication and collaboration between all of the partners. In so doing, we expect to generate greater understanding of the sociocultural dimensions of Arab migration, settlement, and integration in Canada.

Ours is a collaborative and community-driven partnership. Drawing upon the research expertise and institutional resources at the University of Waterloo, the Universite du Quebec a Montreal, and Carleton University and tapping into the community development knowledge and networks of the Canadian Arab Institute, we plan to create an archive and design, build, and launch an interactive community and research web portal that will enable us to identify, enumerate, share, and analyze the experiences and needs of Canadian Arab populations.

The focus of the research partners and the initial research project is to build a more complete understanding of the lives of Arab immigrants in Canada. This includes assessing the socio-economic conditions of Canadian Arabs and establishing a baseline for key measures such as poverty and unemployment and the barriers towards integration and socio-economic advancement. Because so little work has been done in this area, Canadians and Canadian policy- makers are unable to see many of the social, cultural, and economic obstacles that are preventing this rapidly growing population from meeting its full potential.

To these ends, it is necessary to begin a social mapping of the contemporary Arab Canadian population. There are three broad phases to the research: The first phase will involve the formal training of students and community members in gathering stories of migration and settlement; as well as a statistical analysis. Second, a set of policy implications will be derived from the information we have gathered. Third, the information we have collected will help us to build and populate an online research portal. This portal will be an important part of the partnership's advocacy role as it will serve as the basis for an outreach campaign aimed at providing politicians, researchers, among other interested parties with the narratives of migration as well as data about settlement and integration among Arabs living in and moving to Canada. Last, but certainly not least, as we gather migration stories we will also encourage community members to develop and to design an interactive web portal which will allow them to share their stories with their own communities and beyond. This portal will be formatted in such a way as to make it accessible to any and all members of the community along with policy makers, researchers, students, and media. That is, beyond conducting primary community-based research, it is the intention of the partnership to establish research capacity within the community for the ongoing understanding of Arab Canadian experiences.

Multilevel Governance and Climate Change Adaptation Policy in Canada - Daniel Henstra (SSHRC)

Dan Henstra profile picture.

Managing the risks associated with climate change demands adaptation policies—strategic courses of action adopted by governments to reduce the vulnerability of populations, assets and operations, and to strengthen their resilience to climate-related stress. An obstacle to this policy development, however, is the fragmentation of pertinent knowledge, authority and resources among numerous public agencies, multiple levels of government, and a wide range of non-governmental organizations.

This research addresses the question: how does multilevel governance influence the content and quality of adaptation policy and the effectiveness of the policy process? It analyzes the ways in which adaptation policies and policy-making are affected by the relationships between federal, provincial and municipal officials and by the patterns of interaction between state and societal actors.

Globalizing the History of Classical International Political Economy Thought - Eric Helleiner (SSHRC)

Eric Helleiner

Contemporary thinking about the politics of the world economy builds on deep foundations laid by political economists in the 18th, 19th and early 20th centuries

Teachers and scholars in the field of international political economy (IPE) today usually focus on the importance of the ideas of "classical" political economists from Europe and North America. But what about the contributions made by thinkers from other regions of the world in the pre-1945 period?

This research project addresses this question with the goal of rewriting the history of the classical foundations of IPE from a much more global perspective. It explores the distinctive traditions of classical IPE thought that emerged in different parts of the world as well as the transnational flows of ideas about IPE issues across the globe in the pre-1945 period. By globalizing the history of classical IPE thought in these ways, the project aims to contribute to the building of more of a "global conversation" within the field of IPE today.

The "Thickening" of Regional Institutions in the Americas, Asia-Pacific and the Middle East: A Comparative Analysis - Andrew Cooper (SSHRC)

Andrew Cooper

This project will analyze regionalism in three key understudied regions the Americas, Asia-Pacific, and the Middle East, in order to evaluate whether the institutional expansion of regional organizations promotes increased cooperation across regions (as the European Union example suggests) or exacerbates conflict through greater fragmentation of regional relations.

States embroiled in current regional disputes, whether the nature and projection of these contests is associated with rival ideologies (the Americas), territorial claims (Asia-Pacific), or religious identities (the Middle East), or indeed a larger list of factors, are increasingly searching for regional solutions to address these complex situations.

IMF and World Bank Collaboration on Financial Sector Assessment Program: Intersection of Organizational Culture and Potential Impact on Policy Outcomes - Bessma Momani (SSHRC)

Bessma Momani

This project seeks to better understand International Monetary Fund (IMF) and World Bank staff collaboration in the formulation of prescribed policies within one vital program: the Financial Sector Assessment Program to determine how the intersection of their respective organizational cultures can and does affect these prescribed policies.

Specifically, the project’s objectives are:

To conduct the first academic study that uses an organizational cultural lens to examine why, when, how, and where two international organizations intersect to devise key policies;

To use a triangulated research design of document analysis, in-depth personal interviews, and process-tracing to study the intersection of international organization (IO) policies using an organizational cultural approach; and to build on theoretical arguments about organizational culture in IO literature and its impact on policy outcomes found in sociology, international relations, international political economy, and constructivist approaches.