Queen’s Receives $9.1 Million in Canada Research Chairs Funding

Published on: 2010/11/25 - in Releases

Eleven Queen’s University researchers have received funding under the Canada Research Chairs program. The funding will create one new Tier 1 chair, three new Tier 2 chairs, and renew the appointments of seven current chairs.

The university’s newest appointments are Kerry Rowe (Civil Engineering), Ian Janssen (School of Kinesiology and Health Studies), Amy Latimer (School of Kinesiology and Health Studies) and Malcolm Thorburn (Law).

Kerry Rowe, Tier 1 Canada Research Chair in Geotechnical and Geoenvironmental Engineering

Dr. Rowe is an award-winning and internationally-recognized scholar in geotechnical engineering. His research covers a wide range of topics including developing improved methods of protecting groundwater and surface water from contamination due to landfills, mineral processing in the field and mine wastes.

He specializes in examining and extending the lives of different engineered liner systems. Another aspect of his research examines improving methods for building embankments on soft soils found in many parts of Canada. This research is aimed at minimizing the cost of construction and the need for repairs while also reducing the environmental impact of construction, especially near environmentally sensitive areas like wetlands.

“I am delighted by this recognition of our past research and the proposed new research,” says Dr. Rowe. “This funding will assist the university at a time when there is severe pressure on the university budget.”

Ian Janssen, Tier 2 Canada Research Chair in Physical Activity and Obesity

Dr. Janssen’s research program will address three theme areas. The first theme will examine how different amounts, intensities, and types of physical activity and sedentary behaviours, such as TV and video games, influence the health of Canadians. The second theme will determine how features of the physical environments in which young Canadians live, such as the number of recreational facilities and food retailers in their local neighbourhood, influence their physical activity and eating patterns. The third theme will address how emerging changes in dietary and physical activity patterns impact obesity in developing countries.

“I am elated to have received a CRC,” says Dr. Janssen. “The chair will allow me to devote 75 per cent of my time to research and mentoring graduate students over the next 5 years. This funding could not have come at a better time given the physical inactivity crisis and obesity epidemic occurring in Canada and the rest of the world.”

Amy Latimer, Tier 2 Canada Research Chair in Physical Activity Promotion for People with Mobility Impairment

The goal of Dr. Latimer’s research is to promote physical activity among adults with a mobility impairment. She aims to translate research findings about the benefits of physical activity for adults with mobility impairment into practical recommendations and programs encouraging active living. This research will lead to important improvements in the quality of life of Canadians with a mobility impairment.

“Being named a CRC is an honour,” says Dr. Latimer. “It provides me with the resources to build a solid research program. I look forward to working with my students, my colleagues, and members of the Kingston community over the next five years to establish Queen’s as a leader in developing evidence-based strategies for promoting the well-being of Canadians with disabilities.”

Malcolm Thorburn, Tier 2 Canada Research Chair in Constitutionalism, Crime and Security

Dr. Thorburn’s work sets out to build a new foundation for debates about the legitimacy of security operations. Debates on a variety of issues – from the privatization of policing to the expansion of state surveillance operations to the blurring of the distinction between policing and military operations – are dominated by old assumptions that made sense in a world that no longer exists.

Dr. Thorburn’s work seeks both to transcend these old assumptions and to revive the basic values that animated them, setting out a new liberal political theory of crime and security.

“I am really pleased to be named to a CRC at Queen’s Law,” says Dr. Thorburn. “The chair will help to support not only my work but also the work of my colleagues and graduate students working in related areas. I’m confident that it will help to enrich an already vibrant research culture in the law faculty.”

Seven Queen’s chairs have received funding renewals:

Anne Croy (Anatomy and Cell Biology), Tier 1 Canada Research Chair in Reproduction, Development and Sexual Function, receives $1.4 million over seven years to study early pregnancy, particularly pre-eclampsia, and the regulation of gestational blood pressure and post-partum immune memory effects.

Will Kymlicka (Philosophy), Tier 1 Canada Research Chair in Political Philosophy, receives $1.4 million over seven years to explore emerging ideas of citizenship invoked in debates on the environment, global justice, transnational migration, disability, and the status of animals.

Vincent Mosco (Sociology), Tier 1 Canada Research Chair in Communication and Society, receives $1.4 million over seven years to examine how globalization and new technologies are changing the workplace and what the growing class of knowledge workers is doing about it.

Mark Boulay (Physics), Tier 2 Canada Research Chair in Particle Astrophysics, receives $500,000 over five years to develop a new experimental search for dark matter particles, undiscovered but thought to account for most of the matter in our universe, at the new SNOLAB facility.

Linda Campbell (Environmental Studies), Tier 2 Canada Research Chair in Aquatic Ecosystem Health, receives $500,000 over five years to explore methods for improving our understanding of anthropogenic and natural toxicants in aquatic ecosystems and the way humans interact with aquatic environments.

Neal Scott (Geography), Tier 2 Canada Research Chair in Greenhouse Gas Dynamics and Ecosystem Management, receives $500,000 over five years to explore how land management and landscape stability respond to and help mitigate changes in climate and investigate how forest management practices might be used to help mitigate rising carbon dioxide emissions.

Susanne Soederberg (Global Development Studies, Political Studies), Tier 2 Canada Research Chair in Global Political Economy, receives $500,000 over five years to study the role and nature of corporate power on everyday life across and between the global North and global South, with specific reference to questions of social and environmental justice, credit-debt relations, and resistance