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As Richard Harris, PHD’81, of Hamilton, ON, recently discovered, the global reach of Queen's University can exert itself in some unexpected ways
A colleague and I have just returned from a research trip to India, where we used the library and archives of the City of Kolkata. Access to these is determined through personal interviews done by the City Commissioner, and then the Director of Planning. We had heard from colleagues that getting in to any sort of archive in India can be fraught with difficulty. In Kolkata, however, it proved straightforward, in part because of my Queen’s connection.
The City Commissioner may be equally welcoming to all visiting academics. But during our conversation he was favourably impressed by the fact that we were Canadians and noted that the planning director has a son at Queen’s. At any rate, during a subsequent, extended conversation, the latter waxed eloquent and enthusiastic about Queen’s and Canada, based on his experiences during a recent visit to Kingston.
If only I’d thought to ask him whether he was interested in sponsoring an academic appointment at Queen’s on the historical geography of Indian cities!
Prof. Richard Harris, PhD'81, School of Geography and Earth Sciences, McMaster University