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Research Grants

Recipients of The James Maxwell Human Geography Scholarship

2016

Caitlynn Beckett
Rethinking Remediation: Mine Closure and Community Engagement in Northern Canada

A substantial body of research has analyzed the social, economic and environmental effects of mines in northern Canada during their operational phases. However, after closure these mines do not simply disappear and can bring about persistent environmental problems. This research project will focus on mine remediation processes in the Canadian sub-Arctic and to investigate how local communities become involved in these processes. Traditionally remediation plans tend to focus on the physical and economic aspects of containing pollution.

2015

Trevor Wideman, Queens University
Toponymic inscription in Vancouver’s Downtown Eastside: a critical planning intervention

Trevor Wideman’s study will examine the politics of place (re)naming as an enactment of the right to the city, using a case study of a participatory neighbourhood revitalization planning process in Vancouver’s Downtown Eastside (DTES).

2014

Andrew Longhurst, Simon Fraser University
Institutional Landscapes of suburban Poverty Management: The Case of North Surrey, BC

Andrew Longhurst’s research aims to determine how geographies of survival in suburban spaces shape, and are shaped by, specifically suburban forms of poverty management.

Dylan Simone, University of Toronto
Analyzing immigrant indebtedness and socio-spatial polarization in Canadian cities

Dylan Simone’s research seeks to understand how economic inequality and financial vulnerability extend spatially within and between metropolitan areas, through an analysis of immigrant indebtedness across Canadian cities.

2013

Joanna Petrasek MacDonald, McGill University
From the Minds of Youth: Using participatory multimedia to explore mental health impacts of climate change with Inuit youth in Rigolet, Nunatsiavut, Labrador, Canada

Joanna Petrasek MacDonald is using participatory video to explore the affect of climate change on the mental health of Labrador's Inuit youth.

2011

Blair Cullen, Trent University
The Governance of Immigrant Integration: A Case Study of Durham Region, Ontario

Introduced as part of the Canada-Ontario Immigration Agreement, Local Immigration Partnerships (LIPs) mark a fundamental shift in local settlement policy. To address the gap in knowledge about the implications of this policy change, this thesis research features a case study of Durham Region’s LIP. Objectives were designed to examine the impact of Durham’s LIP by interviewing 52 key-informants within six sectors involved in settlement and integration. Findings indicate an effective application of the LIP policy with participants pointing to the LIP’s vital role in bringing Welcome Centres to Durham, increasing the attention and profile of immigration issues and improving governance relations amongst different sectors in settlement and integration. A product of local circumstances, the LIP has engaged in a quasi-advocacy role educating mainstream service providers and institutions on how to respond to a diversifying population. Results contribute to the relatively under-studied but growing knowledge of the LIP policy while demonstrating that the localization of immigration policy under the appropriate terms can be successful.

2010

Laura Senese, University of Toronto
First Nations Mobility in Canada: Examining the Health Impacts of Frequent Movement between Reserves and Cities

Ms. Senese studied the gendered effects of residential mobility or ‘churn’ on the health of urban First Nations populations. Specifically, she examined the differing impacts on men and women, the factors underlying the mobility between the cities and the reserves, and the implications for public policy in health care and urban planning.

2008

Thomas Cummins-Russell, Concordia University
The networks of Montréal’s independent musicians

An important component of Montréal’s cultural economy is its independent music scene, which has gained global recognition due to the success of bands such as Arcade Fire, Islands, and Wolf Parade. These bands and many others in Montréal are called “independent” because they operate outside of the production and distribution channels of the five major record labels, which dominate the North American and global music markets.

This study will look at the place-based attributes of Montréal that contribute to the success of independent musicians and will also examine how independent musicians in Montréal are able to thrive despite lacking the significant advantages that being signed to a major label can bring.

2007

Alana Ramsay, Queen’s University
Prisoner Lumberjacks: German WWII POWs in Canada’s Forests

During the Second World War German prisoners of war were thrust into the role of impromptu Canadian loggers in Northwestern Ontario and elsewhere. This research will explore how the German POWs transformed the Canadian landscape during and after WWII by investigating the role of ideology, economic interest and the personal circumstances of the prisoners in Northwestern Ontario’s forestry industry.

2006

Cory Dobson, University of British Columbia
Curbing Gentrification: Preserving Canada’s affordable housing stock

2005

Martha Stiegman, Concordia University
How the movement to strengthen Community-based Fisheries Management is building alliances between native and non-native coastal communities in Southwest Nova Scotia

2004

Suzanne Belliveau, University of Guelph
How the movement to strengthen Community-based Fisheries Vulnerability of Rural Agricultural Communities in Canada to Climate Change: A Regional Comparison

2003

Véronique Bussières, Concordia University
Community-based Protected Area for the Watershed and Coastal Area of the Old Factory River, East Coast James Bay: Context, Considerations and Challenges

This research looks at acquiring a better understanding of the policy context and human dimension of coastal resource management, especially as it relates to indigenous peoples. In particular, the scope and efficacy of marine protected areas as a management tool in an indigenous setting.

2002

Shirley Chiu, York University
Ethnic Identity Formation: A Case Study of Caribbean and Indian Hakkas in Toronto

Shirley Chiu interviews Carribbean and Indian Hakkas to determine the role of place in forming their identity.

2000

Geoffrey Elliott Lee Rempel, University of British Columbia
Citizenship and Identity Among Mexican Immigrants in Vancouver

This project focuses on the citizenship (broadly defined) of Mexican migrants living in Vancouver. Because this ethnic group has been largely ignored by academic researchers, little is known about them. Therefore, the project first attempts to answer basic questions about this group: how many there are, why they left Mexico, why they are living in Vancouver, their class positions in Mexico and here, their current job status, degrees of integration into Canadian society, what organizations they participate in and what services they use, their legal status, their continuing ties to Mexico.

1999

Kerry Lake, Trent University
Identity and Icons: The Evolving Canadian Landscapes of the Lighthouse and the Grain Elevator

Kerry Lake takes a unique look at Canadian icons such as the lighthouse and prairie grain elevator.

1998

Priya Kissoon, York University
The Migration and Housing Record of Homeless People in Toronto

The objective of this research is to discover, through pre-formatted “housing resumes”, and examination of hostel and shelter intake forms, the housing experiences of the homeless, including their route of migration for their city, province, state or country of origin, to the hostel circuit in downtown Toronto. Integral to this research is the examination of the conditions in which people lived prior to an episode of homelessness and the coping mechanism they employed to prolong their periods with housing and minimize their periods without housing.

1997

Shari Fox, University of Waterloo
Indigenous Ecological Knowledge of the Inuit: Application for Studying Climate and Climate Change

The goals of this project are to document Inuit perceptions and understanding of climate and climate variability; to document how Inuit hunting patterns, methods, technologies, and locations have adapted to climate variability in the past; and to identify the potential Inuit response to effects of future (predicted) long-term climate change.

1996

Mike Buzzelli, McMaster University
The Italian-Canadian Landscape in Toronto from 1945 to the Present

The research project is concerned with the changing landscape of Italian-Canadian settlement in Toronto from 1945 to the present. Following British and Chinese-Canadians, Italian-Canadians are the third largest ethnic group in Toronto and have had a considerable impact on the residential and retail landscape. In the post-War period, they replaced British-Canadians as the largest ethnic group in the St. Clair Avenue and Dufferin Street area. This neighbourhood became (and remains) the symbolic centre of Toronto’s Italian-Canadian community.

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