New centre for research

On Monday, Dec. 6, 2004, Memorial University, in partnership with the Newfoundland and Labrador Statistics Agency of the Government of Newfoundland and Labrador, officially opened the Atlantic Centre of the Canadian Century Research Infrastructure (CCRI). The CCRI is a five-year pan-Canadian initiative to develop national databases from the census records for 1911-1951.

“The census databases will offer unprecedented evidence about Canada 's changing society,” said Dr. Sean Cadigan, the Memorial University team leader of the CCRI. “Specifically the CCRI is constructing sample-based databases for the 1911 to 1951 census enumerations, which are currently closed to most researchers because of federal laws that govern the administration of Canadian censuses. The CCRI will provide researchers with the ability to use previously inaccessible material.”

In addition to creating databases for Atlantic Canada, Memorial University will have complete access to databases of the pre-Confederation Newfoundland censuses for 1901, 1911, 1921, 1935, and 1945. The centre will also serve as the point of access to the national CCRI for researchers from Atlantic Canada.

The CCRI is one of the first major social-science projects to be supported by the Canada Foundation for Innovation. The partnership between Memorial University and the Government of Newfoundland and Labrador provides for joint management of the CCRI Atlantic centre by Dr. Cadigan and Alton Hollett, the director of the NSA. The NSA is providing special secure space for the project, and related technical expertise. The Atlantic Centre will also be used to build further capacity in support of research and teaching.

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