Research in review 2018: Accomplishments and achievements round out another positive year

Dec 20th, 2018

By Jeff Green

Accomplishments and achievements round out another positive year
Research in review 2018: Accomplishments and achievements round out another positive year

From a big jump in research funding to a big role in a national marketing campaign, 2018 marked an incredible 12 months for scholarship, discoveries and innovation at Memorial.

“When you reflect on the past year, it is inspiring to see how our teams of multidisciplinary researchers are helping address challenges facing our province, country and the world,” said Dr. Neil Bose, vice-president (research).

“Whether it is through advancements to critical health-related issues or important insight on climate change, the work of our researchers enhances Memorial’s global profile while it also helps to attract new graduate students and early career researchers to Newfoundland and Labrador. I thank all of our researchers for their commitment to research excellence and for making Memorial such a rich vibrant community.”

Big wins

Over the past year researchers were lauded for their scholarly and creative contributions with elections to the Royal Society of Canada and wins at the East Coast Music Awards, while several were named to prestigious Canada Research Chair posts in May and November.

Memorial put greater focus on enhancing consultations in Indigenous research; a new Humanities and Social Sciences podcast highlighted the valuable research led by Memorial; and the university hosted the first biennial conference organized by the Ocean Frontier Institute.

Researchers also formed new partnerships in the area of music, sound and culture; led an important new study focused on the ancient and elusive Greenland shark; and launched a new website examining Funk Island seabirds.

Depth and breadth

There was an influx of research funding, secured through increasingly competitive processes, aimed at fuelling discoveryhealth related-researchand social sciences and humanities-based research.

And, Memorial was proud to support the new industry-led Atlantic Canadian ocean supercluster.

The Gazette salutes five of the many research stories from the past year.

Canadian first

Dr. Claude Daley, associate dean (research) and professor, Department of Ocean and Naval Architectural Engineering, Faculty of Engineering and Applied Science, became the first Canadian to receive a prestigious international prize for maritime research.

Earlier this year, he received the Dr. Kenneth S. M. Davidson Medal, presented by the Society of Naval Architects and Marine Engineers.

Genetic researchers lauded by Governor General

In May, a quartet of researchers were named winners of the Governor General’s Innovation Awards for their groundbreaking discovery that is saving the lives of those affected by a deadly genetic disease.

Drs. Terry-Lynn Young, Kathy Hodgkinson, Sean Connors and Daryl Pullman were the first recipients from Memorial to receive this prestigious award.

Ranking high

Memorial was the only Canadian university to make the list of the world’s top post-secondary institutions for the study of marine/ocean engineering.

Memorial placed 38 among global universities ranked in the engineering field as reported last month by the Shanghai Ranking Consultancy, which included 44 top universities in its marine/ocean engineering listing.

‘Someone cares’

Memorial is playing a key role in a national mental health research and treatment initiative that received $30 million over five years from the federal government.

“It represents a great start to making a positive impact in the lives of public safety personnel and their families and our communities,” Dr. Rose Ricciardelli, associate professor and co-ordinator for criminology in the Department of Sociology, Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences, told the Gazette in March.

Advancing innovation

Emera Inc. made a significant investment in September to support student entrepreneurship and innovation programming.

The $7-million contribution will sustain and enhance student innovation and entrepreneurial programming.

“We are ensuring our researchers and next generation of creators, inventors and discoverers flourish with their ideas and build a vibrant and successful future for our province and beyond,” Dr. Bose said on the day of the announcement. More details of the contribution can also be found here.

Read other research-related stories currently posted to the Gazette, or here.


Jeff Green is a senior communications advisor with the Office of the Vice-President (Research). He can be reached at