Trudeau projects

Bringing knowledge to bear

The Foundation’s mission of promoting informed dialogue on major issues of public interst manifests through our Trudeau research fellowships. Since 2014, Trudeau fellows agree to conduct a three-year research project in cooperation with other members of the Foundation community on an issue of major relevance to Canadians and the world.

These projects can take different forms. Several of the projects are built around consultations with specific populations, such as children born of wartime rape, Indigenous youth, and young Arab-Canadians.

2014 fellow Myriam Denov holds the Canada Research Chair in Youth, Gender and Armed Conflict at McGill University. Myriam’s Trudeau project is exploring the experiences and perspectives of children born of wartime rape in northern Uganda. Her project seeks to address the long-term impacts of war, and develop policies and programs to assist children and families affected by war in Canada and abroad.

2014 fellow Jason Edward Lewis is the Concordia University Research Chair in Computational Media and the Indigenous Future Imaginary. Based on his work with youth from the Kahnawake Mohawk Territory, Jason’s project is to imagine a prosperous future for Indigenous communities.

2015 fellow Bessma Momani, an associate professor at the Balsillie School of International Affairs and the Department of Political Science of the University of Waterloo, plans to consult Arab-Canadian youth in seven cities across Canada. The objective of Bessma’s project is to examine social inclusion, belonging and attachment, political expression, and youth participation in various Arab communities in Canada. See her video

Other research projects foster public dialogue around controversial issues, like the respect of legal norms by non-state actors in conflict areas and assisted suicide.

2015 fellow René Provost, a professor at the Faculty of Law at McGill University, will explore the possibility of approaching non-state armed groups to incite them to respect minimum standards of international humanitarian law. René is also endeavouring to identify the legal and political conditions under which insurgent courts might be established. See his video

2015 fellow Jocelyn Downie is professor in the Faculties of Law and Medicine at Dalhousie University. Her project is about building cross-disciplinary and cross-sectoral teams to advance our understanding and capacity to address the most pressing issues in end-of-life law, policy and practice. While these issues start with assisted dying, they go far beyond the issues addressed by the Supreme Court of Canada in Carter v. Canada. See her video

Other fellows are proposing new approaches or potential solutions to problems that are increasing in importance, such as world food insecurity, Indigenous land claims, and Canada’s influence in Asia.

Evan Fraser, 2014 fellow, holds the Canada Research Chair on Global Food Security at the University of Guelph. Evan is challenging university and high-school students to come up with solutions to global food insecurity, food waste, and the social and environmental repercussions of unstable commodity prices.

Nancy Turner, 2015 fellow and professor in the Department of Environmental Studies at the University of Victoria, will examine how the botanical heritage and values of Indigenous peoples can support Indigenous rights with respect to land occupancy in British Columbia, elsewhere in Canada, and in the world. Nancy is a specialist in the fields of ethnobotany and ethnoecology, fields that inform her study of the relationship between people, plants, and the environment. See her video

Cleo Paskal is a 2015 visiting fellow at the Centre for International Studies and Research at the University of Montréal. Her project focuses on the role of Canada in Asia and will touch upon questions such as: Does Canada have the potential to be as much of an Indo-Pacific country as, say, Australia? Is this something Canada even wants? Is it something Canada can ignore? Cleo’s project will highlight and examine the international dynamics in the Indo-Pacific, how the region might change, and Canada’s roles and options as an Indo-Pacific nation. See her video