President's Report 2006 | Research

Research Highlights

Industrial Research and Innovation Fund

The Provincial Government's white paper outlined plans to continue its support of the institution's research capacity through its Industrial Research and Innovation Fund (IRIF). The government committed to a substantial increase to the fund in the amount of $22.5 million over the next three years.

The fund will provide matching and start-up funds that will attract further federal investments in research at Memorial University and College of the North Atlantic, budgeted at: $5 million for fiscal year 2005/06, $7.5 million for fiscal year 2006/07 and $10 million for fiscal year 2007/08. The fund will help the university leverage more dollars, thereby enhancing its research activities and contribution to the provincial economy.

New health research funding worth $1.2 million

Dr. Thomas Michalak

The Canadian Institutes of Health Research has awarded seven health research grants worth $1.2 million to researchers at Memorial University in its latest round of funding. The studies will be carried out over periods of one to five years and cover a wide spectrum of health research.

Two of the major projects are hepatitis C studies by Canada Research Professor Dr. Thomas Michalak and studies of creatine synthesis in newborns by Dr. John Brosnan, University Research Professor. Dr. Michalak, Faculty of Medicine, has been awarded an operating grant of $635,515 to study how the hepatitis C virus persists in the lymphatic system even after apparent recovery. Dr. Brosnan, Department of Biochemistry, was awarded an operating grant of $302,036 to examine how newborns acquire creatine. Defects in creatine synthesis have been linked to neurological problems such as epilepsy and mental retardation.

Dr. Guang Sun, Discipline of Genetics, received a one-year operating grant from the Institute of Nutrition, Metabolism and Diabetes in the amount of $107,158 for a study on Excellence, Innovation and Advancement in the Study of Obesity and Healthy Body Weight. Drs. Robert Gendron and Hélène Paradis, Basic Medical Sciences, were awarded an operating grant of $99,451 from the Institute of Genetics for studies on Tubedown-1 in blood vessel health and diseases. Other awards went to graduate students. Janine Woodrow received a clinical research initiative doctoral research grant of $66,000 to study the regulation of rapid skeletal mineralization following lactation. Jared Clarke was awarded a $66,000 doctoral research award to study the nutritional effects on a vascular dementia model in rats. Sammy Khalili was awarded a Canada Graduate Scholarship master's award of $17,500 to study vitamin-D receptor gene and its relation to glucose metabolism in the Newfoundland and Labrador population.

University research professor receives highest honour

Dr. Jeremy Hall

Dr. Jeremy Hall recently received the highest honour that the Professional Engineers and Geoscientists Newfoundland and Labrador (PEG) bestows on its members. At its recent annual conference, PEG announced the recipients of awards for excellence in engineering and geoscience. The Award of Merit, presented to Dr. Hall, is given for valued contributions to the professions and the community.

Dr. Hall has made significant contributions provincially, nationally and internationally to understanding the geosciences and, in particular, to the study of the Earth's interior.

New lab looks at deepwater offshore operations

Dr. Wei Qiu

Dr. Wei Qiu of the Faculty of Engineering and Applied Science has received $85,000 from the Canada Foundation for Innovation (CFI) to support a $213,000 project for the development of an Advanced Marine Hydrodynamics Laboratory (AMHL) at Memorial University

Research at the AMHL will focus on the fundamentals of flow and responses of ships, high-speed vessels and offshore platforms for oil and gas exploration and production in deepwater. The goal is to improve the understanding of complex marine hydrodynamic problems in marine and offshore industries. The required infrastructure includes a parallel computer, which will enable researchers to perform flow computation and visualization; a high-speed, high-resolution digital video camera, used to measure highly nonlinear flow such as water shipping on deck and for underwater flow observation; and post-processing software for visualizing the computational and experimental results. The computer and software will be integrated into the Atlantic Computational Excellence Network's parallel computing network.

Health policy research published

Journal cover

Health policy research done at Memorial University will serve as an important reference for future planning of the health care delivery system in the province.

The impact that the regionalization of health boards in the province had on the restructuring of acute care hospitals is documented in a series of articles by Memorial University researchers, published last month in the Journal of Health Services Research & Policy (Vol. 10, Supplement 2, October 2005).

"This is a peer-reviewed volume of articles based on our research," said Deborah Gregory, project manager and PhD candidate. "It was a great team effort involving researchers from different disciplines and input from the Health Care Corporation of St. John's, including a case study by Sister Elizabeth Davis. It's a good reflection on the health care delivery system in the province and will serve as a useful reference for future planning."

Research leaders receive CFI support

Memorial University researchers will be awarded a total of $385,058 in the inaugural round of funding in the Canada Foundation for Innovation's (CFI) Leaders Opportunity Fund program. The announcement was made by CFI president Dr. Eliot Phillipson and federal Industry Minister Maxime Bernier at McGill University March 28, 2006

Three researchers at Memorial were awarded funds from the Leaders Opportunity Fund:

  • Dr. Ian Fleming, director of the Ocean Sciences Centre, was awarded $136,840 by the CFI for equipment for the project Fish Evolutionary and Conservation Biology Research. Dr. Fleming will use the funding for infrastructure to create a world-class facility for the study of the evolutionary ecology of fish and other aquatic organisms.
  • Dr. Brent Snook, Department of Psychology, was awarded $152,993 for the building of the Bounded Rationality and Law Lab (BRLL). The lab will help in the study of how participants in the justice system make decisions at different points in the processing of a criminal case. The research involves studying how offenders, police officers, lawyers, judges, jurors, probation officers and other citizens make discretionary decisions when they have limited time, knowledge and resources.
  • Dr. Annie Mercier, Ocean Sciences Centre, has been awarded $95,225 for equipment for marine chemical ecology and reproductive biology research. Dr. Mercier's research in marine chemical ecology and invertebrate reproduction will lead to a better understanding of population dynamics in commercial species of benthic invertebrates, with key benefits for the management of fisheries.

The Leaders Opportunity Fund program is a $23.6 million investment that will benefit 145 researchers at 35 institutions from coast to coast. A complete list of NOF projects, by university, can be found at

Researcher awarded funding for first-ever provincial childhood obesity study

Dr. Guang Sun is leading this province's first-ever indepth research into childhood obesity. Photo by HSIMS.

A researcher at Memorial University is conducting the first-ever detailed study into whether or not children in Newfoundland and Labrador are genetically predisposed to obesity.

Dr. Guang Sun, an associate professor of genetics in the Faculty of Medicine on Memorial's St. John's campus, received $50,000 in funding from the Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR) to conduct his pilot study. The funding was announced on Thursday, April 20, 2006. Dr. Sun is well known for his study on adult obesity.

Meanwhile, two other researchers from Memorial were also recipients of funding from CIHR. Dr. Barbara Neis, a professor in the Department of Sociology and co-director of SafetyNet, a Community Alliance for Health Research, was awarded $50,000. Her project will focus on seafood processing occupational health. And, Dr. Michael Grant, an associate professor of immunology in the Faculty of Medicine, will study ways to fight HIV infection. He received $415,137.

In total, Memorial researchers were awarded $515,137

Memorial researchers part of world-class cod project

The Government of Newfoundland and Labrador contributed $350,000 to a Genome Atlantic research project designed to enhance the commercial viability of the cod aquaculture industry in Atlantic Canada.

The objective of the Atlantic Cod Genomics and Broodstock Development Project is to develop a breeding program and a set of fundamental genomics tools which will be used to supply the developing Atlantic cod aquaculture industry with improved broodstock. "This world-class, cutting-edge research project will help maintain Newfoundland's position as a world leader in cod research and development," Minister Dunderdale said. "The provincial government recognizes the economic potential of world-class genomics research being conducted in Newfoundland and Labrador."

Genome Atlantic is a not-for-profit corporation with Board members from all four Atlantic provinces, dedicated to the promotion of fundamental and applied research in genomics for the furtherance of scientific understanding and for the development of the knowledge-based economy in the region

Researchers Dr. Stewart Johnson and Jonathan Moir are co-investigators for the project. Dr. Johnson holds adjunct professorships at Dalhousie University and at the Ocean Sciences Centre, Memorial University. While, Mr. Moir represents the industry on the management board of the Atlantic Innovation Fund Cod Aquaculture Project, a successful collaboration of Memorial University and Northern Cod Ventures.

New era in high performance computing

Researchers in Atlantic Canada can now communicate with ease, share large amounts of information and model and visualize data simultaneously, thanks to the Atlantic Computational Excellence Network (ACEnet). Officials were in attendance at Memorial University May 15 for the launch of ACEnet, the Pan-Atlantic High Performance Computing (HPC) network. Memorial University is the lead institution of the partnership between the University of New Brunswick, Saint Mary's University, St. Francis Xavier University, Dalhousie University, Mount Allison University and the University of Prince Edward Island.

Funding for ACEnet is worth over $23 million and infrastructure will be built over the next two years with significant contributions from the Canada Foundation for Innovation (CFI), Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency (ACOA), and the provincial innovation funds of Newfoundland and Labrador - the Industrial Research and Innovation fund(IRIF), Nova Scotia - Nova Scotia Research and Innovation Trust Fund (NSRIT) and New Brunswick - the New Brunswick Innovation Foundation (NBIF). ACEnet is also strongly supported by Sun Microsystems which has entered a partnership to provide hardware, joint research and support a variety of innovation projects at the ACEnet member institutes.

Archaeology team recognized in national magazine

Archaeological excavations at the pre-contact Inuit winter site of Nachvak Village, northern Labrador, in August 2005.

The Beaver: Canada's History Magazine has featured a Memorial University-led excavation project in the article on Canada's top archeological sites.

Digging History: Canada's Top 10 Archaeological Sites features the work of a team led by Dr. Peter Whitridge, assistant professor of Archaeology. Since 2003 and continuing this summer, Dr. Whitridge has been excavating late pre-contact and early contact era Inuit sites along Nachvak Fiord, in the heart of the new Torngat Mountains National Park Reserve in northern Labrador

"This is the newest national park, and was created as part of the Labrador Inuit land claims settlement in one of Eastern Canada's most spectacular natural areas," said Dr. Whitridge.

Numerous students from Memorial and communities in Labrador have been involved in the research. There are currently six Memorial graduate students at various stages of their MA research on finds from Nachvak Fiord.

Threats to coastal ecosystems

Dr. Richard Rivkin

Non-indigenous aquatic species which are introduced through discharged ballast water of commercial ships in Canadian ports are the leading cause of biodiversity loss in lake ecosystems and a growing concern to aquaculture in Canadian coastal ecosystems. Dr. Richard Rivkin of Memorial's Ocean Sciences Centre is a principal investigator in the Canadian Aquatic Invasive Species Network (CAISN), a newly-funded NSERC Research Network that is studying the introduction and fate of these aquatic species in both Canadian lakes and marine waters on the east and west coasts of Canada. Dr. Rivkin is studying the composition, physiology, introduction and survivorship non-pathogenic microorganisms in the ballast water of commercial ships that originate in the United States, in Europe and (in collaboration with colleagues in British Columbia) in Asia, and discharge their ballast in Canadian ports. Ballast water is carried by ships that are not carrying cargo and is used to stabilize the vessel while in motion.

Adding it up: top honours for math

Dr. Serpil Kocabiyik is one of several members of the Department of Mathematics and Statistics recognized for excellence. (Photo by Chris Hammond)

Two dedicated professors from the Department of Mathematics and Statistics were honoured with prestigious awards this past year.

Helping lead the way was Dr. Serpil Kocabiyik, professor of mathematics, who became the latest winner of the Arthur Beaumont Distinguished Service Award from the Canadian Applied and Industrial Mathematics Society. The honour was presented during the society's meeting June 18 in Toronto.

Dr. Kocabiyik was the first woman to become a professor in her department in September 2005. She's also part of a three-member team from Memorial who were awarded a Canadian Foundation for Innovation grant valued at more than $116,000 for an in-depth project. She'll be joined by Drs. David Pike (lead applicant), associate professor of mathematics, and Paul Peng, associate professor of statistics, for a project titled Resources for Large-Memory Computational Problems in Mathematics and Statistics. Her colleague, Dr. Brajendra Sutradhar, a noted Canadian researcher in statistical science and a University Research Professor at Memorial, was made a fellow of the American Statistical Association at an awards ceremony this August in Seattle, Wash.

Visiting gallery intern example of Irish partnership in the works

Mary Toal

An arts management student from the Dun Laoghaire Institute of Art, Design and Technology in Ireland landed a 10-week internship at the Sir Wilfred Grenfell College Art Gallery this past year.

Mary Toal of Dalkey, County Dublin (20 minutes outside Dublin) lived on campus at Grenfell and become a valuable asset at the gallery.

Ms. Toal's program, Business with Arts Management, is related to the management and running of art galleries and theatres as well as event management in many fields such as mini-festivals or music events. Her program explored all aspects of work in the arts sector, which holds many exciting prospects.

"The internship has been an opportunity for the gallery to complete a placement project in partnership with an institution whose interests are compatible with the gallery," said Gail Tuttle, director of the gallery. "This partnership will not only help our gallery carry out its many projects, but will also support IADT in fulfilling the requirements of its arts management degree, since IADT does not have an art gallery. It's wonderful to welcome an intern who is so eager and enthusiastic."

Grenfell student to study effects of pests on Gros Morne caribou populations

Cheryl Butt

Most people spend their summers trying to avoid flies, but Cheryl Butt spent a couple of months this past year looking for them.

Ms. Butt, who finished her third-year in Grenfell's environmental science program (biology stream), conducted research in Gros Morne National Park this past summer thanks to the 2006 Gros Morne National Park University Environmental Internship. She studied the effects of parasitic flies on caribou and their migration.

Ms. Butt is an honours candidate in the environmental science program.

Her work was done under the supervision of Drs. Barry Hicks (College of the North Atlantic, Carbonear) and Christine Campbell, chair of Grenfell's environmental science program.

The internship program is jointly sponsored by Gros Morne National Park of Canada and the Gros Morne Cooperating Association. Open to students in environmental programs at SWGC, the internship provides an opportunity (with $4,500 funding) for students to participate in research projects related to environmental and conservation issues concerning the park and surrounding ecosystems. Evaluation criteria include academic achievement, project design and quality, as well as relevance of the project to park research needs.

National stroke award for Memorial neuroscientist

(L-R) Dr. Paul Morley, Dr. Dale Corbett and CSN board chair David Scott at the award ceremony in Quebec City.

Dr. Dale Corbett is the first winner of the Paul Morley Mentorship Award from the Canadian Stroke Network. The award recognizes significant contributions to the training of the next generation of Canadian stroke researchers. Dr. Corbett is a professor of Basic Medical Sciences at Memorial and holds the Canada Research Chair in Stroke and Neuroplasticity. He is actively involved in the Canadian Stroke Network as an investigator and member of the board of directors. In announcing the award, the Canadian Stroke Network wrote that the field of stroke research in Canada has been enhanced by Dr. Corbett's commitment to mentorship for students and researchers at all stages of their careers

Studying Freemasons in a post-modern world

Sociologist Dr. Scott Kenney will conduct research to explore how today's Freemasons find meaning through the organization's complex symbolism. Masonic symbols and metaphors are used to examine big questions about life and the universe. (Photo by Leslie Vryenhoek)

After years of researching deviant behaviour and victims of crime, sociologist Dr. Scott Kenney was ready to change direction — and after years as a Freemason, he knew just where he wanted to head.

"Research is kind of like acting — you can get typecast," he joked. "I wanted to look at something new, something that hadn't been studied before."

Dr. Kenney, who became a Freemason himself in 1999, realized that the centuries-old fraternal organization offered an opportunity to explore virgin terrain. While some sociological studies were done in relation to the 18th and 19th centuries, virtually nothing more current exists. "What there is tends to be over-generalized, and all of it is very dated."

Worse, he said, a lot of what's been written outside academia about the Freemasons is misleading, even crazy. "There are so many myths and misperceptions."

While the subject matter is a change, Dr. Kenney has long been pursuing studies in "social interactionism."

"I'm interested in how people in small groups use symbols to draw out meaning and significance." That aligns perfectly, he noted, with Freemasonry, which uses the metaphor of a stone mason and a complex set of symbols to explore big questions about life and the universe. "The symbols are, by design, multifaceted with a number of interpretations, so one can construct various moral or personal meanings."

Dr. Kenney conceived a research project that would examine how individual members use the Masonic symbolism, and what they derive from their affinity with the organization. His initial funding has come from RDI , or Research Development Initiative, a fund established by the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council (SSHRC) to foster the early stages of a project, especially when a researcher wants to move into uncharted territory.

Dr. Kenney's application to launch "Ritual Construction of Symbolism in Meaning — Freemasons in a Post-Modern World" was successful in securing over $33,000 for two years of research; that RDI grant and has been augmented by a $6000 research grant from the vice-president (academic). Dr. Kenney will use the funds to convene discussion groups of Freemasons in Nova Scotia and Newfoundland and Labrador, where there are about 6000 and 2000 members respectively.

Ancient language a key to cultural understanding

Dr. Vit Bubenik will introduce students to the ancient language of Sanskrit this fall.
(Photo by Leslie Vryenhoek)

Dr. Vit Bubenik will introduce students to the ancient language of Sanskrit in the fall of 2006. Students interested in ancient languages can become familiar with one of the oldest in the Indo-European family as Dr. Vit Bubenik, professor of linguistics, offers a two-semester course in Sanskrit. According to Dr. Bubenik, Sanskrit dates back about 3300 years, when it was the language of chanting and Rigvedic hymns in India. Hymns — as many as 10,000 of them — were memorized and passed along orally before being written down around 400 BC. "The cultural importance of Sanskrit is enormous. You cannot approach medieval and ultimately modern India without it," he explained, noting that all four of the major religions born on the subcontinent — Hinduism, Buddhism, Jainism, Sikhism — have scriptures in languages that arose from Sanskrit.

Spoken now by perhaps 70,000 people, it's still a language of ritual and religion. "If your father is a Brahmin, you might learn it today," Dr. Bubenik said.

Development opportunities for urban and rural communities

Dr. Rob Greenwood (Photo by Chris Hammond)

"The population of rural Canada is still growing, but most of that growth is in rural communities adjacent to urban centers," said Dr. Robert Greenwood, director of the Harris Centre. "In Newfoundland that can be seen in the North-East Avalon and in the Humber Valley. While neighbouring rural and urban communities have many areas of interaction, ranging from labour force and transportation infrastructure, to water supply, solid waste management and recreation facilities, most of the municipal governments in Canada have very limited geographic scope." Dr. Greenwood is a co-investigator on two national teams of researchers and regional development practitioners that will examine ways to maximize development opportunities in rural and urban communities in Canada, including Newfoundland and Labrador. Dr. Greenwood is a co-investigator on a project led by Drs. Mark Partridge and Rose Olfert, University of Saskatchewan called, Mapping the Rural-Urban Interface: Partnerships for Sustainable Infrastructure Development, which will see research across Canada on the implications of rural-urban interaction on the provision of various types of infrastructure. A total of $410,000 has been allocated for the national project, with $250,000 provided by Infrastructure Canada, through a peer-reviewed program administered by the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada (SSHRC). This research will complement another national study, on which Dr. Greenwood is also a co-applicant, titled, The Social Dynamics of Economic Performance: Innovation and Creativity in City Regions. University of Toronto professors Dr. David Wolfe and Dr. Meric Gertler are the co-directors of the national project that will examine why creative and innovative workers are attracted to certain city-regions, and how the resulting innovation contributes to economic development. SSHRC is providing $2.5 million for the project under the Major Collaborative Research Initiative (MCRI) program.

Productivity high in colorectal cancer research project

Drs. Elizabeth Dicks and John McLaughlin. (Photo by HSIMS)

The sign outside the door says "Let's Talk About My Butt." Inside, Dr. Elizabeth Dicks is eager to talk about butts and the problem of colorectal cancer in Newfoundland and Labrador. Colorectal cancer is the second leading cause of death from cancer in Canada, and the rates of colorectal cancer in this province are 27 per cent higher than the national average. "We're talking about 127 cases for every 100,000 people, compared to a Canadian average of 100 cases for 100,000 people," she said from her first-floor office in the Faculty of Medicine.

Since 2001 she has played a key role with the Colorectal Cancer Interdisciplinary Health Research Team, recently funded for a second five-year term by the Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR). She's been the nurse co-ordinator of the Newfoundland section of the project and her job has included working with many of the families who have a hereditary form of colorectal cancer. Now that she's finished her PhD, she will be the managing director for the whole team, in Newfoundland and Labrador and Ontario.

Research program focuses on teacher practices with technology

Dr. Elizabeth Murphy is examining French teachers who use online real-time communication technologies. Pictured with Dr. Elizabeth Murphy, right, are faculty of education students/ research assistants Justyna Ciszewska-Carr and Maria Rodriguez.

A Memorial University researcher is looking at how teachers can harness the power of information and communication technologies. Dr. Elizabeth Murphy, Faculty of Education, is undertaking a program of research on teacher practices in contexts of technology use. This past year, Dr. Murphy received a grant for $50,000 from the Official Languages Research and Dissemination Program which is a Strategic Joint Initiative of the Social Sciences and Humanities Council (SSHRC) and the Department of Canadian Heritage. This one-year research project will focus on teacher practices in a context of teaching French using online real time communication technologies. Dr. Murphy is also the recipient of two other SSHRC awards. She is the principal investigator on year two of a $97,000, three-year study of e-teacher practices in high school distance education. As well, she is a co-investigator in the Community-University Research Alliance (CURA) on e-learning led by Dr. Jean Brown in the Faculty of Education. Dr. Murphy's program of research involves emerging technologies which she argues are unlike the technologies of the past. "Today's tools are extremely powerful," said Dr. Murphy. "They are cognitive tools. They can amplify our thinking skills. I'm interested in how teachers harness that power so that teaching and learning also become very powerful. With this latest project, I'm focusing specifically on using technology to help teachers teach French."

New book puts Irish hero under the microscope

Peter Hart

Dr. Peter Hart, Canada Research Chair in Irish Studies, published a thorough examination of an Irish hero that's sure to stir some controversy, even as it garners acclaim this past year. Mick: The Real Michael Collins provides a detailed chronicle of the life of the Irish revolutionary who became the first government leader before dying in an ambush in 1922. Young, good-looking and having attained a "celebrity hero" status in life, Mr. Collins has been revered in Ireland since his death, Dr. Hart said. Mick was favourably reviewed in the Books section of the Globe and Mail on Feb. 19. Reviewer John Brady called the work an "enthralling study" and noted, "Hart has produced a meticulous, doggedly factual and minutely detailed account." And that, in fact, is just what Dr. Hart set out to do in this, his fourth book. Dr. Hart is no stranger to controversy. His 1998 book The I.R.A. and Its Enemies continues to draw criticism from Irish leaders for its depiction of a pivotal ambush. He's been called "a revisionist" and accused of tearing down heroes. "In some ways, I'm labelled now as an anti-nationalist," he noted, adding others commend him for deconstructing myths. "I don't like either label. People start asserting ideological positions and the arguments become irrelevant. Then there's no progress."

Profs win prestigious award named after Memorial researcher

Drs. Ches Sanger, left, and Anthony Dickinson are this year’s winners of the Keith Matthews Award for Best Book published on a nautical subject.

Two well-known researchers were recognized this past year with a major international book award named in honour of a renowned historian who spent many years at Memorial University. Drs. Ches Sanger, professor emeritus in Geography, and Anthony Dickinson, professor, Biology and executive director of the International Centre, won the Keith Matthews Award for the Best Book published on a Canadian nautical subject or by a Canadian on any nautical subject. The award is presented annually by the Canadian Nautical Research Society. They were chosen for their well-received book Twentieth Century Shore-Station Whaling in Newfoundland and Labrador which examines an almost-forgotten chapter of this province’s maritime history. The award had special meaning for the researchers. It is named after Dr. Keith Matthews who co-founded the Maritime History Group here at Memorial and produced important papers on this province’s fishery and its connection to western England. Dr. Matthews was also a founding member of the Canadian Nautical Research Society, and its first president.

Dr. David Natcher’s research is helping build better relationships between indigenous groups and other governments and organizations.

Dr. David Natcher, Canada Research Chair in Aboriginal Studies, was named the co-director of a large research network this past year that will examine the impact of economic development in Canada’s north. Like so many other projects in which Dr. Natcher is involved, this one aims to ensure the interests and values of aboriginal people play a pivotal role in decision-making. The Social Economy Research Network for Northern Canada, as the project is known, is one of five such network nodes across the country that the Social Science and Humanities Research Council of Canada (SSHRC) is funding. This three-year, $1.75 million northern network project will support social-economy research from Labrador across the continent to the Yukon. In addition to Dr. Natcher and his co-director, Dr. Chris Southcott of Lakehead University, three research centres are involved: Northern Research Institute at Yukon College; Northern Research Institute at Aurora College in Inuvik and Nunavut Research Institute in Iqualuit. Dr. Natcher will work with colleagues and communities across Canada’s north to examine the interdependent relationship between social needs and sustainable economies.