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SSHRC grants awarded

By Janet Harron

Five Standard Research grants have been awarded to researchers in the Faculty of Arts by the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada (SSHRC). The scholars receiving the three-year grants are Drs. Julie Brittain and Gerard Van Herk (Linguistics), Dr. Stephan Curtis (History), Dr. Stuart Durrant (German and Russian), and Dr. Priscilla Renouf (Archaeology).
Dr. Brittain’s research follows from her previous work on the acquisition of Cree as a first language (The Chisasibi Child Language Acquisition Study).
Results and their implications for education and clinical speech interventions will be shared with Cree-speaking communities.

The Canada Research Chair in Linguistics, Dr. Van Herk will be using his SSHRC grant to look at language change in Petty Harbour/Maddox Cove. Dr. Curtis’ study explores the acceptance of academic medicine in 19th century rural Sweden and the implications for bringing medical techniques to remote parts of the world today.

A relatively obscure figure in Russian literature, Dmitriy V. Filosofov is the subject of Dr. Durrant’s project, which will also touch on the Canadian Russian diaspora. Dr. Priscilla Renouf, the Canada Research Chair in Archaeology, will continue her work on the Northern Peninsula Archaeology and Landscape History Program, which is an expansion of her earlier Port au Choix Archaeology Program. This program will identify Dorset Palaeoeskimo sealskin processing and will contribute to the study of hunter-gatherers worldwide.

Three faculty members in the Department of Geography have been successful with the National Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada (NSERC). Dr. Evan Edinger has been awarded an NSERC discovery grant while Drs. Trevor Bell and Rodolphe Devillers both received renewals of their previously awarded NSERC grants for 2008-2009. Geography department head Karyn Butler is understandably gratified by this showing.

“These renewals and the new grant from NSERC recognize the creativity and innovation that are such a large part of the research being done in our department,” she said.

Dr. Edinger’s project builds on the success of the Arctic Net Project 1.2 in order to improve overall understanding of climate change in northern communities.