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Reconciling the past, inspiring the future

Just over a year ago, the Truth and Reconciliation Commission released its final report, which contained 94 calls to action.

[QNSA conference organizers]
Organizers of the Inspiring a Generation conference map out their camapign schedule. (Submitted photo)

Moving those recommendations forward will be the overarching focus of an upcoming conference organized by the Queen’s Native Student Association (QNSA).

“The goal of the conference is to show that everyone, especially young people, has a part to play in the reconciliation process,” says Darian Doblej (Artsci’18), a co-chair of Inspiring a Generation, which will take place Feb. 2-4. “We anticipate that the participants will engage in debates and question what more they can be doing to advance reconciliation between Indigenous Peoples and Canadian society.”

While reconciliation is the broad theme of the conference, the sessions will focus specifically on how economic growth fits into the reconciliation agenda. As the organizers explain, “our conference discusses this economic growth – the good, the bad, and the ugly – and what it means on the ground for everyday people. We know that in Canada, meaningful, positive growth only occurs in collaboration with Indigenous Peoples … These discussions will bring leaders together and offer solutions to our shared challenges.”

Organizers have invited a mix of students, community leaders, elected officials, and civil servants to participate in the conference. The Hon. David Zimmer, Ontario minister of Indigenous Relations and Reconciliation, and the Hon. Liz Sandals, President of the Treasury Board, will offer remarks at the conference. Other confirmed attendees include Cindy Blackstock, Executive Director, First Nations Child and Family Caring Society of Canada, the Hon. Patty Hajdu, federal Minister of Employment, Workforce Development and Labour, and Cynthia Wesley-Esquimaux, Indigenous Chair on Truth and Reconciliation at Lakehead University.

A majority of the conference will feature a series of work sessions, where small groups of delegates from different backgrounds and experiences will engage in frank discussions.

“The conference is a great opportunity for student delegates to interact with current leaders,” Mr. Doblej says. “We also think the professionals will benefit hearing from students and learning what’s important to them.”

The conference will also feature social sessions where delegates can relax and discuss the day’s topics. At the social sessions, participants will have the opportunity to view the finalists from the QNSA National Art Project. QNSA received many more submissions than it expected, with artists from across Canada sending in 50 pieces of art for consideration.

“We want to showcase young artists who are celebrating Indigenous ways of being through art,” Mr. Doblej says. “The national art project acknowledges that debates around reconciliation happen in more than one media.”

The conference is open to Indigenous and non-Indigenous students, as well as students from across all disciplines. The deadline to sign up is Jan. 23 at midnight. Visit the Inspiring a Generation website for more information.

Current issue of For the Record

For the Record provides postings of appointment, committee, grant, award, PhD examination, and other notices set out by collective agreements and university policies and processes. It is the university’s primary vehicle for sharing this information with our community.

The next issue of For the Record will be published Thursday, Feb. 2. The deadline for submitting information is Tuesday, Jan. 31. For the Record is published bi-weekly throughout the academic year and monthly during the summer.

Submit For the Record information for posting to Senior Communications Officer Wanda Praamsma


Headship Search Committee — Department of Psychiatry

In accordance with the Senate document governing the appointment of clinical/academic department heads that was approved on March 26, 2009, the provost and vice-principal (academic) of Queen’s University and the chief executive officers of Hotel Dieu Hospital, Kingston General Hospital, and Providence Care have established a joint search committee to provide advice on the headship and the present state and future prospects of the Department of Emergency Medicine. The composition of the committee is:

  • Silvie Crawford, Executive Vice-President & Chief Nursing Executive, Kingston General Hospital
  • Jonathan Fairbairn, Chief Resident, Department of Family Psychiatry
  • Michael Fitzpatrick (co-chair), Chief of Medical and Academic Affairs, Hotel Dieu Hospital
  • Ruzica Jokic, Associate Professor, Department of Psychiatry, Queen’s University
  • John Leverette, Vice President, Medical & Academic Programs, Providence Care
  • Marianne McGuire, Departmental Administrator, Department of Psychiatry
  • David Messenger, Head, Department of Emergency Medicine
  • Niki Mofidi, Chief Resident, Department of Psychiatry
  • Maurio Ruffolo, Vice President, Patient & Client Care and Chief Nurse Executive, Providence Care
  • Dallas Seitz, Associate Professor, Department of Psychiatry, Queen’s University
  • Don Seymour, CEO, Addiction & Mental Health Services, Kingston, Frontenac, Lennox & Addington Health Unit
  • Christopher Simpson (co-chair), Vice-Dean, Clinical, Faculty of Health Sciences
  • Christopher Smith, Associate Professor, Department of Medicine, Division of General Internal Medicine
  • David T. Zelt, Executive Vice President and Chief of Staff, Kingston General Hospital
  • Andrea Sealy (Secretary).................. Senior Staffing Officer, Faculty of Health Sciences

Faculty, staff, students, residents, and all other members of the hospital and university communities are invited to submit their comments, in writing, on the present state and future prospects of the department, as well as the names of possible candidates for the headship and the reasons for supporting each nominee. Written submissions are to be directed to the co-chairs c/o Andrea Sealy, Faculty of Health Sciences, Macklem House, 18 Barrie St., Queen’s University, Kingston, Ont., K7L 3N6 and electronic submissions can be forwarded to andrea.sealy@queensu.ca. While submissions will be accepted throughout the search process, it will be advantageous for the committee to have them early on. Please note that committee members are required to maintain confidentiality regarding the committee’s deliberations, and comments, which are shared with committee members, are also confidential. Anonymous submissions will not be considered.


Undergraduate Student Summer Research Fellowships

The Undergraduate Student Summer Research Fellowships (USSRF) provide an opportunity for any continuing undergraduate students at Queen’s to develop their research skills under the guidance of a faculty researcher. Nineteen fellowships are available on campus and up to three of the 2017 fellowships will be offered to students whose projects take place at the Bader International Study Centre (BISC) at Herstmonceux Castle, East Sussex, England.

Program guidelines and application forms can be found on this website. Applications are open until March 10, 2017.

Human Resources

Successful Candidates

Job Title: Communications Leader
Department: Canadian Cancer Trials Group (CCTG)
Competition: 2016-157
Successful Candidate: Lisa Callahan

Job Title: Superintendent (USW Local 2010)
Department: Community Housing (Housing & Ancillary Services)
Competition: 2016-356B
Successful Candidate: Hope Alberry

Job Title: Cognitive Analytics Developer
Department: Centre for Advanced Computing
Competition: 2016-399/2016-R034
Successful Candidate: Yik Hung Tam

Job Title: Undergraduate Program Assistant (USW Local 2010)
Department: School of Computing
Competition: 2016-414
Successful Candidate: Karen Knight (School of Computing)

Job Title: Departmental Assistant (USW Local 2010)
Department: Psychiatry
Competition: 2016-439
Successful Candidate: Susan Beck (Psychiatry)

Job Title: Information and Admissions Assistant (USW Local 2010)
Department: Continuing Teacher Education, Faculty of Education
Competition: 2016-417
Successful Candidate: Sarah Anderson

Job Title: Student Support Assistant (USW Local 2010)
Department: Continuing and Distance Studies, Faculty of Arts and Science
Competition: 2016-379
Successful Candidate: Philomene Kocher (Arts & Science Faculty Office)

Job Title: Program Administrator and Coordinator (USW Local 2010)
Department: Masters of Industrial Relations Program, Faculty of Arts & Science
Competition: 2016-411
Successful Candidate: Anne-Marie Bergman (Applied Science, Faculty Office)

Job Title: Training and Development Coordinator, CBME (MEdTech) (USW Local 2010)
Department: Faculty of Health Sciences, Educational Technology Unit
Competition: 2016-394
Successful Candidate: Trevor Stone

Job Title: Special Events Coordinator (USW Local 2010)
Department: Event Services (Housing & Ancillary Services)
Competition: 2016-413
Successful Candidate: Cassandra Udashkin-Hall

Job Title: Senior Systems Analyst (USW Local 2010)
Department: Information Technology Services (ITS)
Competition: 2016-336
Successful Candidate: Vidya Kadirvelu (Information Technology Services (ITS))

Job Title: Director, Prison Law Clinic
Department: Faculty of Law
Competition: 2016-097
Successful Candidate: Sean Ellacott (Faculty of Law)

Job Title: Manager, International and Certificate Programs (USW Local 2010)
Department: Faculty of Law
Competition: 2016-376
Successful Candidate: Chantal Rousseau (Faculty of Law)

Job Title: Junior Application Security Analyst (USW Local 2010)
Department: Information Technology Services (ITS)
Competition: 2016-348
Successful Candidate: Troy Willard (Information Technology Services (ITS))

Job Title: Receptionist (USW Local 2010)
Department: Financial Services (ITS)
Competition: 2016-395
Successful Candidate: Deborah Leach

Job Title: Investment Associate (USW Local 2010)
Department: Investment Services
Competition: 2016-389
Successful Candidate: Rebecca Graham (Medicine)

Job Title: Simulation Laboratory Technologist (CUPE Local 254)
Department: School of Nursing
Competition: 2016-368
Successful Candidate: Devin Clarke

Job Title: Personal Counsellor (Faculty) (USW Local 2010)
Department: Faculty of Engineering and Applied Science
Competition: 2016-338
Successful Candidate: Laura MacLachlan (Student Counselling Services)

Job Title: Caretaker (CUPE 229)
Department: Residence Facilities
Competition: 2016-392A
Successful Candidate: Amanda Cuddon (Residences)

Job Title: Departmental and Financial Assistant (USW Local 2010)
Department: University Marketing, University Relations
Competition: 2016-441
Successful Candidate: Laurie Pond (University Marketing, University Relations)

Job Title: Caretaker (CUPE 229)
Department: Residence Facilities
Competition: 2016-390 A-C
Successful Candidate: Maureen Sheldrick (Residences), Sheila Way (Residences), Marsha Sheasby (Residences)

Job Title: Financial Systems Access Analyst (USW Local 2010)
Department: Financial Services
Competition: 2016-372
Successful Candidate: Paula Drouin (Financial Services)

Job Title: Administrative Assistant (USW Local 2010)
Department: Emergency Medicine
Competition: 2016-380
Successful Candidate: Francisca Brandao

Job Title: Recruitment Assistant (USW Local 2010)
Department: Smith School of Business
Competition: 2016-423
Successful Candidate: Kelly James

Job Title: Associate Director, Business Development (Toronto)
Department: Smith School of Business
Competition: 2016-405
Successful Candidate: Jennifer Dunk

Job Title: Graduate Program Assistant (USW Local 2010)
Department: Civil Engineering
Competition: 2016-422
Successful Candidate: Debbie Ritchie (Civil Engineering)

Job Title: Study Coordinator
Department: Emergency Medicine
Competition: 2016-381/2016-R031
Successful Candidate: Lindsay O'Donnell

Job Title: Business Analyst (USW Local 2010)
Department: Information Technology Services (ITS)
Competition: 2016-312
Successful Candidate: Tanya Fowler

Job Title: Director, Finance and Staffing
Department: Office of the Vice-Provost and Dean of Student Affairs
Competition: 2016-293
Successful Candidate: Chad McLeod

Job Title: Assistant. Football Operations and Community Engagement (USW Local 2010)
Department: Athletics and Recreation
Competition: 2016-354
Successful Candidate: Breanna Burton

Job Title: Administrative, Recruitment and Events Coordinator (USW Local 2010)
Department: Faculty of Engineering and Applied Science
Competition: 2016-359
Successful Candidate: Cortney Clark (Four Direction Aboriginal CTR)

Job Title: Office Assistant, High Performance Sport (USW Local 2010)
Department: Athletics and Recreation
Competition: 2016-387
Successful Candidate: Adriane Epprecht

Job Title: Learning Management Systems Specialist (USW Local 2010)
Department: Continuing and Distance Studies, Faculty of Arts & Science
Competition: 2016-383
Successful Candidate: Rachel Eagen

Job Title: Graduate Assistant (USW Local 2010)
Department: Political Studies
Competition: 2016-419
Successful Candidate: Carli Chan (Queen's University International Centre)

Job Title: Programmer Analyst (USW Local 2010)
Department: Advancement Technology Services
Competition: 2016-274
Successful Candidate: Ryan Backus

Job Title: Monitor/Auditor
Department: Canadian Cancer Trials Group
Competition: 2016-316/2016-R024
Successful Candidate: Nadia Daniels

Job Title: Intsructional Designer (Online Learning) (USW Local 2010)
Department: Faculty of Engineering and Applied Science
Competition: 2016-347
Successful Candidate: Brittany McRae

Job Title: Clinical Trials Assistant
Department: Canadian Cancer Trials Group
Competition: 2016-355/2016-R027
Successful Candidate: Christina Stratis

Job Title: Parking By-law Officer (CUPE Local 229)
Department: Physical Plant Services
Competition: 2016-393
Successful Candidate: WITHDRAWN

Job Title: Mental Health Registered Nurse (USW Local 2010)
Department: Student Wellness Services
Competition: 2016-295
Successful Candidate: WITHDRAWN

Job Title: Health Promotion Program Asssitant (USW Local 2010)
Department: Student Wellness Services
Competition: 2016-342
Successful Candidate: Sarah Mills

Joint statement issued by Queen's, City on proposed strategic partnership

The following is a joint statement issued by Mayor Bryan Paterson and Principal Daniel Woolf regarding a proposal for a strategic partnership between the City of Kingston and Queen's University.

The City of Kingston and Queen's University have a long history of collaboration on many initiatives, and for the past several months have discussed how we can take that collaboration a step further. We are now proposing that the City and Queen’s strike a formal partnership to help build a more prosperous community.

On Tuesday, Jan. 24, City Council will be asked to consider approval of a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) between the City and Queen’s that would see us work closely together to pursue opportunities in support of innovation, economic development and the retention of more of our young people. If approved by Council, the MOU will serve as a mechanism for enhanced collaboration and pooled resources in pursuit of our shared innovation agenda.

Queen’s is already committed to fostering economic development through education, research, innovation and commercialization, and welcomes the City’s desire to be interconnected in this vision moving forward. Some of the opportunities that could be pursued through this partnership include:

  • Developing experiential learning opportunities for students through internships and post-graduation internship employment programs
  • Furthering the development of student-led entrepreneurial enterprises in the community through various initiatives, including the Dunin-Deshpande Queen’s Innovation Centre
  • Building on the work currently done at Innovation Park and exploring future opportunities
  • Jointly pursuing further partnerships and investments in Kingston from the provincial and federal governments

This proposed MOU, if approved by Council, would be another example of Queen’s and the City working together to pursue opportunities to build a more dynamic innovation ecosystem in Kingston. We know that when given the opportunity to work collaboratively to address important problems and identify solutions, creative minds will yield benefits not only for the region, but nationally and globally as well. Together, we can establish Queen’s and Kingston as leaders in attracting and supporting the next generation of influencers, innovators, researchers, and entrepreneurs.

Mayor Bryan Paterson and Principal Daniel Woolf

Homecoming 2017 dates set

[Homecoming 2017]
Members of the Queen's Bands lead the alumni parade from main campus to the revitalized Richardson Stadium during Homecoming 2016. (University Communications)

Queen’s Homecoming 2017 will take place Oct. 13-15.

Alumni invited to return for Homecoming include those from classes ending in ‘2’ and ‘7’, as well as members of the Tricolour Guard, celebrating 50 or more years since graduation.

Students graduating in 2017 are also invited to celebrate their first Homecoming as alumni and mark the occasion of their “Reunion-Zero.”

The weekend will feature, among other events, a football game against the York Lions at the revitalized Richardson Stadium on Saturday, Oct. 14 at 1 pm.

The university will work closely with alumni, students, staff, faculty and city partners to confirm programming and event details. Visit the Homecoming page for event updates. For more information, contact the Reunions Office by email or call 1-800-267-7837.

Hometown honour

  • Principal Daniel Woolf speaks to a small gathering in Wallace Hall about the history of his predecessor William Leitch, the fifth principal of Queen's University.
    Principal Daniel Woolf speaks to a small gathering in Wallace Hall about the history of his predecessor William Leitch, the fifth principal of Queen's University.
  • Christopher Markwell, chairman of the Baird of Bute Society’s board of trustees, presents the Baird of Bute Innovation Award to Principal Daniel Woolf.
    Christopher Markwell, chairman of the Baird of Bute Society’s board of trustees, presents the Baird of Bute Innovation Award to Principal Daniel Woolf.
  • Christopher Markwell, chairman of the Baird of Bute Society’s board of trustees, and Principal Daniel Woolf stand beneath the portrait of Principal William Leitch in Wallace Hall.
    Christopher Markwell, chairman of the Baird of Bute Society’s board of trustees, and Principal Daniel Woolf stand beneath the portrait of Principal William Leitch in Wallace Hall.

In 2015 it was discovered that William Leitch, the fifth principal of Queen’s University (from 1859 till his death in office in 1864), was the first person to apply scientific principles to accurately describe the rocket as the best device for space travel.

Understandably, it was a significant finding not only for the university but for Leitch’s hometown, the Isle of Bute.

On Wednesday, Jan. 11, Principal Daniel Woolf accepted the Baird of Bute Innovation Award on behalf of his predecessor for “his ground-breaking contribution to space science.”

Christopher Markwell, chairman of the Baird of Bute Society’s board of trustees, traveled to Queen’s along with Robert Godwin, the space historian and author who made the discovery, to present the award, named after Andrew Blain Baird, an Isle of  Bute blacksmith who achieved the “first all-Scottish heavier-than-air powered flight” in 1910.

The innovation and an aviation awards are presented each year, as well as scholarships and programs, to help “inspire children to aspire,” Mr. Markwell explains.

Through his research, Mr. Godwin discovered that Principal Leitch was the first person to correctly apply modern scientific principles to spaceflight in his 1861 essay A Journey Through Space. A year later Leitch included the essay in his book God's Glory in the Heavens.

Principal Leitch was ahead of his time – more than 30 years ahead, Mr. Godwin explains.

While there was some initial doubt, Mr. Godwin has confirmed the finding with leading experts in the field.

“A year later we know now (Leitch) wasn’t guessing,” Mr. Godwin says. “He was a very bright person, a polymath – geology, botany, astronomy, mathematics, all the natural philosophies of the time. He was enlightened. He stood up for women’s rights, equal rights. He was anti-slavery. He was extraordinary.”

Principal Woolf, the 20th principal of Queen’s, said the university was proud to accept the award.

“It is a privilege for Queen’s to receive Principal Leitch’s award into its archives, where it will enable the community to learn more about his contributions to the foundations of our university, to science, and to education in general,” he says “Although he has no surviving family members that can be traced, Principal Leitch is still held in high esteem by his Queen’s family, who remain proud of their former leader.”

For more information on Principal Leitch or to purchase Mr. Godwin’s book William Leitch Presbyterian Scientist and the Concept of Rocket Spaceflight 1854-64 visit the website of CGS Publishing.



Rally for mental health

[Student-athletes sport Bell Let's Talk toques]
Queen's student-athletes sport the signature blue toques they received for participating in the Bell Let's Talk national student initiative. (Photo by Robin Kasem)  

Queen's Athletics and Recreation and the Varsity Leadership Council hosted a Mental Health Game on Friday night as part of the national Bell Let's Talk student initiative. Campus groups and community organizations were on hand to share information about mental health resources. Student-athletes sported special Bell Let's Talk toques to help raise awareness of the issue.

Student-athletes from across Canada will spark a conversation about mental health ahead of and during Bell Let's Talk Day on Jan. 25. Visit the Bell Let's Talk website to learn more.

A perfect 10

[Andrea Priamo]
Andrea Priamo of the Queen's Gaels goes to the basket during Saturday's OUA women's basketball game against the Toronto Varsity Blues at the Athletics and Recreation Centre (ARC).

A quick roundup of Gaels teams in action over the weekend:


Andrea Priamo tallied a season-high 19 points, and the Queen's Gaels women's basketball team remained the only undefeated team in the conference, as they defeated the Toronto Varsity Blues 86-63 on Saturday at the Athletics and Recreation Centre (ARC).
Priamo was 8-of-15 from the field, 3-of-4 from the free-throw line, and recorded seven rebounds in the victory, while Robyn Pearson added a double-double with 15 points and 11 rebounds for the No. 5 nationally-ranked Gaels, who improve to 10-0 in conference play.
On Friday, the Gaels persevered for a thrilling 79-75 overtime victory over the Ryerson Rams at the ARC. Abby Dixon scored a season-high 21 points for the Gaels, who rallied for an overtime triumph after the Rams banked in a three-point bucket to even the game with only seconds remaining in regulation. Pearson and Emily Hazlett each added 11 points in the victory.


The Queen's Gaels men's basketball team came up just short Saturday at the ARC, dropping a nail-biter 75-71 to the Toronto Varsity Blues.
The Gaels (6-4) dropped their third game in a row. Sukhpreet Singh had a game-high 21 points, while Tanner Graham earned a double-double with 14 points and 11 rebounds

The Gaels fell to the undefeated Ryerson Rams 101-77 on Friday at the ARC. Richard Iheadindu led the Gaels with a team-high 18 points, while Singh added 17 points.


The No. 5 Queen's Gaels (15-4-1) defeated the No. 3 McGill Redmen (14-4-2) 2-1 Friday in matchup of two of the country’s best programs.

For the Gaels, it marked the second straight win over their long-time rivals from Montreal after snapping a 31-game losing streak with a win in Kingston on Nov. 26. The Gaels sweep the season series with the Redmen and move into the top spot in the OUA East.


The Queen's Gaels (8-2-6-0) defeated the Waterloo Warriors (8-2-6-1) 5-2 Sunday in Napanee to extend their winning streak to six games. Addi Halladay led the way with a pair of goals with Kyla Crouse, Clare McKellar and Hailey Wilson rounding out the scoring.

On Saturday, the Gaels edged the Laurier Golden Hawks 2-1 in a shootout in Napanee. Nadia Larocca scored for the Gaels in the first period and Addi Halladay netted the winner as Stephanie Pascal stopped all of Laurier’s shootout attempts.


The Queen's Gaels (4-6) defeated RMC Paladins (0-10) in their first OUA women’s volleyball league game of 2017. The scores of the sets finished at 25-9, 25-13 and 25-16 for the Gaels. 
Savannah de Groot finished with 10 points and Nicola Ros had 13 assists.


The Queen's Gaels (6-4) defeated RMC Paladins (2-8) in straight sets 25-15, 25-20 and 25-14. Jamie Wright powered the Gaels attack with 34 assists. 

Meet Canada's 'deliveryman'

On the day that Justin Trudeau’s cross-country tour stopped in Kingston, the civil servant charged with helping the Prime Minister deliver on his commitments visited campus. Matthew Mendelsohn, an assistant professor in Queen’s Department of Political Studies from 1994-2000, is now leading the results and delivery unit that Prime Minister Trudeau created following the election.

Before giving a lecture at the School of Policy Studies, Mr. Mendelsohn sat down with Mark Kerr, Senior Communications Officer, to discuss his role as deputy secretary to the cabinet (results and delivery) in the Privy Council Office, explain the public service’s new approach to delivering results, and share his views on the role universities can play in the arena of public policy.

MK: Media have called you “Canada’s chief deliveryman.” How would you describe your role?

MM: My role is about ensuring that government is in a good place to deliver on the commitments in the ministers’ mandate letters. It’s to help ministers and departments overcome obstacles that may arise in terms of delivery.

[My role and the unit] is really about doing three simple things. First, it ensures the objectives are clear for new programs or policies. Second, it ensures the delivery plans are clear. Third, it ensures there is an appropriate measurement strategy to see if results are being achieved, if the policy outcomes promised to Canadians are being realized and, if not, how the policy can be re-calibrated or adjusted.

[Matthew Mendelsohn]
Matthew Mendelsohn responds to a question following his talk at the School of Policy Studies on Jan. 12.

How does this new approach to defining, achieving, and reporting on results differ from the past?

I’d say there are a couple of different things that we are trying to do.

First, we’re trying to include more medium-term and longer-term outcome measures in what we are reporting and tracking. For example, a job-training program would not just report on the number of students they have served or the satisfaction rate of those students. It would report on whether the students actually got jobs in what they were trained for and, more medium-term, how long they held those jobs and if they are still in jobs in the field that they were trained for six months later. That doesn’t mean the input measures aren’t important, but government and departments have historically not spent as much time reporting on the outcomes.

The second difference is there is a real alignment between the public service and ministers in terms of their desire to focus on outcomes. In many organizations and government, reporting on results or accountability frameworks were often low priority public service exercises. There is accountability, an audit function, and it’s all really important. Whereas now, I think there is a shared agreement between public servants and political leadership that in addition to those functions, we want to have a better sense of what outcomes we are achieving for the dollars we are spending.

The third difference is that we’re more interested in public reporting on results and putting things out there more transparently. Some things might be going well; some things may not be going well. We are putting more data and evidence out there for citizens, stakeholders, the policy community, and the media to engage with and see how things are going.

Is there a culture shift involved with this new approach?

There’s a big change management process going on. At the moment, government and public servants are very keen, engaged, and focused on this culture change.

However, there are going to be frictions that emerge and gaps in skill sets and capacity. For years, people have reported on activities, “what we do.” Now they have to report on outcomes, and that is a more complex activity. It requires more nuanced assessment of what we control, what we don’t control, and how we attribute outcomes. That’s a big culture change, and I think everyone recognizes where we are trying to go and everyone has a shared vision.

[Matthew Mendelsohn]
Matthew Mendelsohn, an assistant professor at Queen's from 1994-2000, explains his new role as deputy secretary to the cabinet (results and delivery) in the Privy Council Office.

Are there things current students could be doing now to adjust and prepare for this new approach within the public service?

In the public service right now, we are increasingly looking for people with skills that I think young people are well suited to offer that we haven’t had before. I think we need members of the public service to have big data analytical skills. We have the need for people who can visualize data and processes and have the ability to communicate that visually through infographics and other means. Crowd sourcing, open-source policymaking, and stakeholder engagement activities more broadly are skills that governments are just starting to recognize they need.

People must have the ability to make decisions in a more horizontal environment, a more open and transparent environment where a monopoly control of information is not an asset and not even possible. They must have the ability to mobilize and harness diversity and work in collaborative teams to achieve shared outcomes.

Matthew Mendelsohn's Professional Experience
Director, Mowat Centre for Policy Innovation and Associate Professor, School of Public Policy and Governance, University of Toronto, 2009-2015
* Deputy Minister and Associate Secretary of the Cabinet, Cabinet Office, Government of Ontario, 2007-2009 
* Deputy Minister, Intergovernmental Affairs and Democratic Renewal, Government of Ontario, 2005-2007
* Deputy Minister and Head, Democratic Renewal Secretariat, Government of Ontario, 2004-2005
* Associate Professor, Department of Political Studies, Queen’s University, 2000-2004 
* Senior Advisor, Intergovernmental Affairs, Privy Council Office, Government of Canada (on leave from Queen’s), 1996-1998
* Assistant Professor, Department of Political Studies, Queen’s, 1994-2000

Many things haven’t changed, though. You still need clear lines of accountability, someone in charge, and you still need to get approval from a minister or someone with delegated authority from a minister. However, there are a variety of skill sets that government doesn’t have and needs more of, so we are in the process of looking at how we get those skills and bring people in with those skills.

Principal Woolf struck a committee to examine Queen’s University’s presence in the public policy arena. More broadly speaking, what roles can and should universities play in public policy in the 21st century?

That’s a really complex question. There’s the research element, the faculty element, the student element. I think there are pieces in all of that. I think we are in a period where there is less monopoly and control of information, so creating tighter collaboration and more open dialogue between researchers and public policy makers is really important. Having a place where governments can turn for authoritative information and real research remains important because we exist in a world where there are lots of incoming bits of information that may not be verifiable or as well tested.  

I think we are entering a period where governments are looking to outsiders and different ways of understanding the world. Government has a whole bunch of knowledge but so do researchers, stakeholders, and civil society. Governments need all of that understanding and knowledge to address complex public policy challenges, so to me public policy needs universities more than ever.

Big Data on the silver screen

Queen’s University surveillance expert David Lyon hosts screening of Citizenfour.

Next up...
Big Data, Cyber Security and Healthcare
Denise Anthony, Dartmouth College
Tuesday, Feb. 7
School of Medicine, 6:30 pm

After a successful start, Big Data 175 continues with a showing of Citizenfour at the Screening Room in Kingston. The film – which records a reporter and documentarian travelling to Hong Kong for the first of many meetings with Edward Snowden – won an Academy Award in 2015.

The Big Data events are part of the Queen’s University 175th anniversary celebrations – a year-long exploration into the pros and cons of Big Data in fields such as health care, marketing and national security.

Big Data is large amounts of data that can be used to spot business trends, prevent diseases and combat crime, among other uses. These data sets are so large that traditional data processing applications are inadequate to deal with them.

 “This is an excellent movie with absolutely unique footage,” says David Lyon (Surveillance Studies Centre). “The audience will be captivated from the very first scene. It’s compelling.”

In January 2013, American documentary film director Laura Poitras received an encrypted email from a stranger calling himself Citizenfour. In it he offered inside information about the illegal wiretapping practices of the US National Security Agency (NSA) and other intelligence agencies. In June of the same year, she travelled to Hong Kong for the first meeting with the stranger, Edward Snowden. She was accompanied by journalist Glenn Greenwald and Guardian reporter Ewen MacAskill.

“Edward Snowden was not a conventional whistleblower but, better, a truth teller,” says Dr. Lyon. “He exposed Big Data being used in unique and, he argued, illegal ways.”

Dr. Lyon will introduce the movie and host a question and answer period following the film.

The Big Data series continues on Tuesday, February 7 with Big Data, Cyber Security and Healthcare public lecture presented by Denise Anthony from Dartmouth College. The event will be held in the School of Medicine Building, Room 132A starting at 6:30 pm and preceded by a reception at 5:30 pm.

“It’s energizing to meet with people from all over Queen’s and realize we have a common goal of presenting Big Data to the public,” says Dr. Lyon. “We are exploring what’s being done with Big Data on campus, and arguing about the pros and cons of Big Data in fields from healthcare to marketing to national security and beyond.”

The film is being presented at the Screening Room Monday, January 16 at 6:45 pm. For more information, including up-to-date information on presentations and topics, visit the BD175 website.

A look ahead for parents and youth

Expo showcases community programs for local children and youth.

On Saturday, January 14, parents and youth from across Kingston and the surrounding region will fill Grant Hall for the first annual Youth Programs and Camps Expo. The event, presented by the Enrichment Studies Unit (ESU) at Queen’s, will offer information and sign-up opportunities for a range of extracurricular activities offered by various community groups this spring and summer.

“We’re expecting up to 500 parents and students through Grant Hall for the expo,” says Tracey Mallen, Director of the Enrichment Studies Unit. “This expo will provide parents and youth with information on the wide range of activities for youth of all ages across the Kingston community.”

Over 30 community organizations will be on hand to promote over 250 programs for children aged four to 18 – including those focused on the arts, athletics, recreation and academic enrichment. A number of live demonstrations are also planned. For younger attendees, there will be a number of activities including face painting, and a presentation by Matt Ellerbeck, known locally as “The Salamander Man.”

A number of Queen’s-affiliated groups will be in attendance, including the ESU, which celebrates its 30th anniversary this year – and will be promoting their enrichment experience programs for students in grades seven through 12. Queen’s-affiliated programs include the Faculty of Engineering and Applied Science’s educational outreach program Connections, Athletic and Recreation’s Q-Camps, and the long-running Science Quest programs.  

“Science Quest's mission has always been to engage and empower youth by offering programs that spark curiosity in science, technology, engineering and mathematics,” says Tristan Brunet, Sc’19, Director of Science Quest. “Our programs aim to show the connection of science to the world around us. We're happy take part in the Youth Programs and Camp Expo this year to share our summer programs with the Kingston community.”

The expo is free to attend, and parking is free in designated on-campus lots.

For more information, please visit the website.


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