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REF NO.: 130

SUBJECT: Memorial University opens the Atlantic Canada centre of the Canadian Century Research Infrastructure

DATE: Dec. 6

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.

“This major research project provided an opportunity to build upon the unique partnership between Memorial Universityand the Newfoundland and Labrador Statistics Agency (NSA). Our collaboration with the NSA, and the extraordinary range of data contained in these records, will enable researchers at Memorial and elsewhere to undertake important new research about the 20th century,” said Dr. Christopher Loomis, vice-president (Research), MemorialUniversity.

“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, but in a manner that respects such laws.”

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 Universityand 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.

There are five other centres in the CCRI: the Universityof Ottawa serves as the host institution; Centre interuniversitaire d'études québécoises at Université Laval and UQTR (Québec); York Universityand the University of Toronto(Ontario); and the University of Victoria(West, Pacific and North).

For more information, please see

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For more information contact: DeborahInkpen, communications co-ordinator (research) at 737-4073 or


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