York researchers receive more than $11.9 million in SSHRC funding


TORONTO, August 5, 2011 – Researchers, graduate students and postdoctoral fellows at York University have been awarded more than $11.9 million from the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada (SSHRC).   The grants, part of $237 million in funding and awards recently announced, will span across nine faculties and support York research that improves the quality of life of Canadians, while advancing knowledge and building understanding of complex socio-cultural and economic issues. 

“We are very pleased with SSHRC’s investment in humanities and social sciences research to support York’s researchers,” said, Robert Haché, York’s vice-president research & innovation. “This funding will allow our researchers to make important contributions to our country’s knowledge base, while addressing key social issues facing Canadian society.”

Forty-three York faculty members received more than $2.9 million to fund their research projects through SSHRC’s Standard Research Grants program.  York also received more than $1.6 million to support 15 projects funded through the:

  •      Insight Development Grants competition
  •      Public Outreach and Dissemination Grants competition
  •      Research/Creation Grants in Fine Arts competition

As part of the Aid to Research Workshops and Conferences program results from the November competition, fourteen York projects were funded, securing more than $480,000 for the University.  These awards support workshops held nationally and internationally, and conferences hosted in Canada.   In this category, York researchers enjoyed a 100 per cent success rate, spanning across five Faculties.  The funding was granted for conferences and workshops covering a wide range of topics, including: 

  •         Modern Slavery, Human Rights and Human Development
  •         Museums, Film, Musealization in German culture
  •         Critical Issues in International Refugee Law Research
  •         Changing Frontiers of Ecological Knowledge:  A Critical Dialogue of Asian Ecologies on the Edge
  •         A Workshop on 3-D Cinema
  •         The Politics of Labour in Canada

Graduate students and doctoral fellows benefited from the announcements as well:  179 York master’s and doctoral students have won more than $5 million in scholarships and fellowships.  More than 2,500 graduate and postdoctoral projects across Canada received funding. 

Eight York researchers also received more than $1.5 million in funding under the Partnership Development Grants program, which encourages applicants to work collaboratively with partners to develop research in the social sciences and humanities.  This funding will support partnerships between York researchers and Canadian and international universities and non-governmental organizations (NGOs), government departments, domestic and international associations, among others.   In this competition, York’s success rate was 17 per cent higher than the national success rate.  Seven out of the eight awards made were associated with York’s research centres. 

“The Government of Canada recognizes the importance of investing in research in order to keep Canada at the forefront of the global economy,” said Gary Goodyear, minister of state (Science and Technology). “We are supporting research that will improve the quality of life of Canadians, while helping our universities develop, attract and retain the world’s best researchers.”

“Social sciences and humanities research is about people – who we are as human beings, what we do and why. By deepening our understanding of ourselves and the world around us, and by sharing that knowledge with government, businesses and communities across the country, our researchers continue to make significant contributions to Canada’s prosperity and our quality of life,” said SSHRC president Chad Gaffield. “Through these investments, we ensure that Canada’s best scholars receive the support they need for their research and that they share their knowledge with those who can put it to use across society.”

A complete list of SSHRC-funded projects is available on the SSHRC website.


SSHRC is the federal agency that promotes and supports university-based research and training in the humanities and social sciences. Through its three funding programs ─ Talent, Insight and Connection ─ SSHRC enables the highest levels of research excellence in Canada and facilitates knowledge-sharing and collaboration across research disciplines, universities and all sectors of society.

York University is the leading interdisciplinary research and teaching university in Canada. York offers a modern, academic experience at the undergraduate and graduate level in Toronto – Canada’s most international city. The third largest university in the country, York is host to a dynamic academic community of 50,000 students and 7,000 faculty and staff, as well as 200,000 alumni worldwide. York’s 10 Faculties and 28 research centres conduct ambitious, groundbreaking research that is interdisciplinary, cutting across traditional academic boundaries. This distinctive and collaborative approach is preparing students for the future and bringing fresh insights and solutions to real-world challenges. York University is an autonomous, not-for-profit corporation.

Media Contact:
Arielle Zomer, Research Communications, York University, 416 736 2100 ext. 21069, azomer@yorku.ca