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Posted: Tuesday, October 23, 2003

Three New Canada Research Chairs Announced for Trent University

Chairs in Archaeological Studies, Aboriginal Arts and Literatures, and Cultural Studies to bring $512,500 in additional research funding to the University

Trent University will welcome three new world-class researchers as Canada Research Chairs (CRCs) in Archaeological Studies, Aboriginal Arts and Literatures, and Cultural Studies. The office of Minister of Industry Allan Rock announced the funding for these Chairs this morning at the University of Toronto.

Trent’s newest Canada Research Chairs were among 118 announced at an event that also saw the CRC Program reach a major milestone, by appointing its thousandth Chair. The program stands at the centre of a national strategy to make Canada one of the world’s top five countries for research and development and seeks to attract and retain world-class researchers. Trent is already home to five CRCs, who advance teaching and learning through their leading edge explorations in diverse disciplines.

"Today's announcement is a milestone for the Canada Research Chairs Program," said Allan Rock, Minister of Industry. "There are now more than 1,000 Chairholders across the country who are working to make the quality of life on campus and beyond better for students, researchers and Canadians as a whole."

As announced this morning, Dr. James Conolly will join Trent’s Anthropology department as Canada Research Chair in Archaeological Studies; Marrie Mumford will join the Native Studies department as Canada Research Chair in Aboriginal Arts and Literature; and Dr. Davide Panagia will join the Cultural Studies department as Canada Research Chair in Cultural Studies.

Trent’s new CRCs are five-year "Tier 2 Chairs," that are held by researchers acknowledged by their peers as having the potential to be world leaders in their fields. Each Tier 2 CRC brings with it $100,000 in research funding.

CFI Funding Announced

Also announced today was additional funding for Trent and its CRCs through the Canada Research Chairs Infrastructure Fund of the Canada Foundation for Innovation (CFI). Prof. Conolly was awarded $62,537 for a Spatial Archaeology Research Laboratory (SARL) as part of the Trent Archaeological Research Centre. Prof. Mumford will receive $75,000 for the development of the Mini-Bimaadiziwin, while Prof. Panagia will be awarded $75,000 by CFI to develop a centre for scholarly research into public opinion and the rhetoric of the image.

"We are excited to be welcoming these innovative researchers to Trent," says Dr. Chris Metcalfe, Dean of Research and Graduate Studies. "They will enrich the experience of our students and will enhance our research profile. We are also grateful for the infrastructure funding that will allow them to develop their innovative research programs. Canada Research Chairs make extraordinary contributions to Trent and to the Canadian and international research communities."

Current CRCs at Trent

The milestone event also provided an opportunity for Trent to look at the recent accomplishments of its five current CRCs. Dr. Eric Helleiner, Canada Research Chair in International Political Economy, has published 10 book chapters and six journal since 2001. Earlier this year, he published a book The Making of National Money: Territorial Currencies in Historical Perspective and last year edited a special section of the journal Geopolitics on the topic of The Geopolitics of North-South Monetary Relations. Prof. Helleiner was recently selected to be co-editor of a new book series Cornell Studies in Money that will be published by Cornell University Press.


Dr. Dennis Murray, Canada Research Chair in Terrestrial Ecology and the newest of Trent’s current CRCs, has started to establish his research program through collaborative projects with the Ministry of Natural Resources. He has been awarded a CFI Infrastructure grant in support of field and laboratory equipment for studies of the impacts of predation and parasitism on small mammals. Prof. Murray also submitted a letter of intent to the New Opportunities Program of CFI for the development of a Wildlife Parasitism and Disease Research Centre at Trent. He supervises two master’s degree candidates.


Dr. Bryan Palmer, Canada Research Chair in Canadian Studies, has published articles in six Canadian journals, including the Journal of Canadian Studies, and an article in the U.S. publication New Labor Forum. He has written an introduction to a book published in the U.S., has had a previously-published article anthologized in a Canadian collection and a previously-published book translated and published in Spanish. Prof. Palmer has had articles accepted by five international journals and a further essay will appear in a collection of articles on global labour history published by the International Institute for the Study of Social History (Amsterdam, The Netherlands). Prof. Palmer edits the biannual journal, Labour/Le Travail, organized a conference to celebrate its 50th anniversary, and secured SSHRC and Aid to Scholarly Journals grants for this publication work, totaling $92,000 in 2001-2002. He has recently submitted a book-length manuscript entitled James P. Cannon and the Origins of the American Revolutionary Left: Labor Radicalism and the Uneasy Formative Years of United States Communism, 1890-1928 to the University of Illinois Press. He has also created two new courses in Trent’s Canadian Studies and Native Studies graduate program and is supervising four PhD and one master’s degree candidate.


Dr. James Parker, Canada Research Chair in Emotion and Health, recently completed a joint study with the U.S. National Guard (and Behavioral Health Strategies of Charleston, WV as the industrial partner) at six different locations, involving 1,500 adolescents. This one-year longitudinal study examined the effectiveness of a residential intervention program, called the Challenge Academy, for promoting emotional and social competency in at-risk youth. Prof. Parker has also recently completed the first stage of a longitudinal study on the relationship between emotional intelligence and the successful transition from high school to university at 10 different post-secondary institutions in Canada and the United States, involving a total sample of 7,500 first-year students. This project is a collaboration among various post-secondary institutions, as well as private sector partners from the United States (Behavioral Health Strategies of Charleston, WV) and Canada (Multi-Health Systems of Toronto, which has contributed over $100,000 in in-kind support for the research project).


Dr. Brad White, current Canada Research Chair in Conservation Genetics and Biodiversity, and director of the Natural Resources DNA Profiling and Forensic Centre, has also marked many milestones in his time at Trent. He is a member of the Founding Directorate of the Peterborough DNA Cluster Project, and initiated the DNA Forensic Camp for 120 high school students this year, with an NSERC Promoscience grant. Prof. White also initiated the collaborative Honours Forensic Science degree with Sir Sandford Fleming College and developed a collaborative project on raccoon rabies that has received funding from NSERC through the Strategic Grant program.

Canada Research Chairs (CRC) is a Government of Canada program in which Chairholders advance the frontiers of knowledge in their fields, not only through their own work, but also by teaching and supervising students and coordinating the work of other researchers. In 2000, the Government of Canada allocated $900 million to establish 2,000 research professorships - Canada Research Chairs - in universities across the country.

The Canada Foundation for Innovation (CFI) is an independent corporation established by the Government of Canada in 1997, with a goal to strengthen the capability of Canadian universities, colleges, research hospitals, and other not-for-profit institutions to carry out world-class research and technology development.


Click here for a document that details the work of Trent’s new CRCs. For further information, please visit

For further information, please contact:
Dr. Chris Metcalfe, Dean of Research and Graduate Studies
(705) 748-1011, Ext. 1272

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Last Updated December 10, 2003