News Release

REF NO.: 257

SUBJECT: $1.6M for social science research at Memorial

DATE: August 11, 2011

                What does religion and Disney, the Canadian news media and climate change, and employment after retirement have in common? They are among the 26 projects being led by Memorial researchers to receive more than $1.6 million in new research funding from the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council (SSHRC).
             “Research in the social sciences and humanities is essential to our understanding of the complex and rapidly changing world we share, our place in and impact on that world, and our interactions with one another,” said Dr. Christopher Loomis, vice-president (research) of Memorial University. ”These investments, earned in a tough national competition, will enable talented researchers at Memorial to contribute to that understanding, and to help effect a safer, more civil and sustainable future for Canada and the world.”
            Research funded by the SSHRC is meant to enhance our understanding of modern social, cultural, technological, environmental, economic and wellness issues. Minister of Industry Gary Goodyear recently announced the Government of Canada’s investment of $121 million through SSHRC to support over 1,700 projects across Canada.  
            Dr. Jennifer Porter, Department of Religious Studies, received funding for her project, Religion and Disney: Exploring the Dimensions of Disney’s Religious Work in Films, Theme Park Productions and Fan Communities.
            She will investigate the impact that Disney entertainment has on the worldviews of audiences by observing Disney fan communities. Unlike any other study to date, this project seeks to identify the meanings fans take from Disney films and theme parks, what impact these meanings have on their religious and ideological worldviews, and what such impacts might say about the ideological positioning of Disney fans in global cultural and religious landscapes. The project will contribute to a more generalized understanding of religion in the 21st century, and point to new ways of being religious in a media and consumption driven world.
            Dr. Mark Stoddart, Department of Sociology, received funding for his project, Canadian news media and climate change discourse networks, 1997-2010. Climate change is an ongoing, much politicized and much publicized issue around the globe. Dr. Stoddart’s focus on climate change discourse in Canada is particularly relevant, given the concerns about the potential climate impacts of Alberta’s oil sands, Canada’s role in the debates about Arctic sovereignty given the receding polar ice, and the fact that Canada is ranked among the worst per-capita greenhouse gas emitters in the world. Dr. Stoddart also received funding for Puffins, Kayaks and Oil Rigs: Shifting Modes of Society-Environment Interaction on the Newfoundland Coast.
            Dr. Amy Warren, Faculty of Business, is the lead researcher on a study of bridge employment, the work that an individual partakes in after retiring from their career. Dr. Warren and her co-investigators, Dr. Kathryne Dupré (also a Memorial University faculty member) and Dr. Kevin Kelloway, are interested in bridge employees’ perceptions and experiences during this form of employment. Given the large number of baby boomers who will soon retire from their careers and the financial impact of the economic crisis, it is expected that many more people may consider working bridge jobs. 
A complete list of the projects funded at Memorial can be found online at http://today.mun.ca.
Aid to Research Workshops and Conferences: November 2010 Competition Awards
           Dr. Andrea M. Rose, The Phenomenon of Singing International Symposium VIII, July 10 to 13, 2011, $24,000
Standard Research Grants: October 2010 Competition Awards
           Amanda Bittner, Party leaders in Canadian elections, $87,173
           Mario E. Blaser, The political ontology of caring for non-humans, $68,724
           Kelly R. Blidook, Exploring parliamentary committees: dyadic versus collective representation in Canada's House of Commons, $24,605
           Sonja M. Boon, Life writing, citizenship and the body: corporeal virtue in the consultation letters to Samuel-Auguste Tissot, $43,784
           Ratana Chuenpagdee, Fundamentals of participatory integrated management: values, images and principles, $115,385
           Barry C. Gaulton, From colonial enterprise to mercantile venture: the archaeology of social and economic change at Ferryland, Newfoundland, $109,804 
           Karen C. Goodnough, Thomas Falkenberg (University of Manitoba),   Ronald J. MacDonald (University of Prince Edward Island), Connecting and integrating practical wisdom, theory, and experience: case studies in teacher preparation, $90,910
           Paul B. Grant, Vladimir Nabokov's Lolita: a publication and cultural history, $7,505
           Douglas J. House, Premiers and development in post-confederation Newfoundland and Labrador, $33,684
           Robert K. Ormsby, Localizing the universal bard: Shakespeare, Canada, and globalization, $49,407
           Jeffrey A. Pittman, Sadok Ghoul (University of Alberta), The importance of monitoring by tax authorities to corporate governance, $63,750
           Jennifer E. Porter, Religion and Disney: exploring the dimensions of Disney's religious work in films, theme park productions and fan communities, $71,996 
           Natalie E. Slawinski, Bansal, Pratima (The University of Western Ontario), Organizational time orientation and environmental performance $64,458
           Mark C.J. Stoddart, Puffins, kayaks and oil rigs: shifting modes of society-environment interaction on the Newfoundland coast, $ 71,888
           Amy M Warren, Kathryne E. Dupré, Kevin E. Kelloway (Saint Mary's University),   Bridge employment: a multi-focused analysis, $30,345
Public Outreach Grants – Open Category: November 2010 Competition Awards
           Sandra Clarke & Philip Hiscock, Spreading the words: an interactive dialect atlas of Newfoundland and Labrador English, $161,612 
           Jean Briggs, Alana Johns (University of Toronto), Carrie Dyck Utkuhiksalingmiutitut Inuktitut postbase (affix) dictionary, $78,220
           Beverley Diamond, World Conference of the International Council for Traditional Music, $125,506
SSHRC Institutional Grants: December 2010 Competition Awards
           Memorial University of Newfoundland 78,209
Partnership Grants – letter of Intent: January 2011 Competition Award
           Ratana Chuenpagdee, Too big to ignore: global partnership for the future of small-scale fisheries $19,510
           Barbara Neis, On the move: employment-related geographical mobility in the Canadian context 20,000
Insight Development Grants: February 2011 Competition Awards
           Yvan Rose, From phonology to phonetics in child language development $74,811
           Mark C.J. Stoddart, Randolph B Haluza-DeLay (The King's University College), David B. Tindall, (The University of British Columbia), Canadian news media and climate change discourse networks, 1997-2010, $44,234
           Liam Swiss, The institutionalization of the global foreign aid network, 1960-2008, $45,504
Aid to Research Workshops and Conferences: May 2011 Competition Awards
           Dr. Matthew Kerby, Masters of our own Domain: Politics and Public Policy in Newfoundland and Labrador in the Danny Williams Era, $11,358
           Dr. Kelly Vodden , Culture, place and identity at the heart of regional development, $29,804

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