post cards from congress – day 3

Day 3 was a slow start but one that ended up with real and intellectual sunshine.

The morning was slow because all the delegates were busy at association meetings.  The book fair was quiet and resembled a “Where’s Waldo” game from the late 1980s.  Finding the ResearchImpact-RéseauImpactRecherche (RIR) booth and neighbouring SSHRC booth is much easier than finding Waldo.

After 24 booth visits (20 of them after lunch) and over one dozen substantial conversations about KMb, the most frequent question was, again, “How can my university get involved.” This is a question the RIR universities will be considering post Congress.  The day ended with a table of SSHRC and CFHSS colleagues.  Words our colleagues used to describe Day 3 included:







Sunny Beaver


Maple Bacon Dog

The day had some great opportunities for learning, for reflection and for team building among colleagues.  Congress is about research and learning but it is also about connections.  It’s about knowledge and research connections as well as building those connections that will see us through another year.

Re-imagining the ivory tower / Reconcevoir la tour d’ivoire

By David Phipps (ResearchImpact, York)

KMb is enhancing transparency and access to universities but as we work hard at engaging we remain struck in silos inside the ivory tower.

La mobilisation des connaissances accroît la transparence et l’accès aux universités. Toutefois, malgré le travail acharné que nous accomplissons en ce sens, nous demeurons prisonniers des silos à l’intérieur de la tour d’ivoire.

Recently I attended a curling bonspiel in Ottawa and because my team lost as soon as they could I ended up on twitter and saw this @fedcan tweet

Good morning all! We’re live blogging @fedcan‘s annual conference this morning at

The Canadian Federation of the Humanities and Social Sciences (FedCan) was holding their Annual Conference,  which featured a talk by SSHRC President, Chad Gaffield. The theme of the conference was “The Humanities Paradox: More Relevant and Less Visible Than Ever?” and the title of Chad’s talk was “Re-imagining Scholarship in the Digital Age“, both of which had a theme of exploring the relevance of academic research outside of the academy. Chad’s talk was wide ranging but for anyone who has had the pleasure of hearing Chad speak as many times as I have his observations were familiar. They were all linked by the theme of “re-imagining”, imaging a new paradigm of scholarship that is emerging on campuses across Canada. Specifically, Chad spoke of re-imagining in three areas: teaching, research and campus-community connections.


  • The old “professor push” method of teaching is evolving into a student centred, inquiry based method of learning. Text heavy, power point slides are being replaced by image heavy and digital rich media. Students are exploring problems rather than being told solutions.


  • Researchers are pursing horizontal connections across different ways of knowing. This means that researchers are not only reaching out to other scholarly disciplines but they are embracing community, Aboriginal and other traditions of knowledge. Continue reading