Queen's University

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Strategic Research Plan

Strategic Research Plan 2018-2023

Excellence in Research through Diversity of Thought and Understanding

Research brings Queen’s to the World and the World to Queen’s


Queen’s University has 175+ years of shaping Canada’s future – through innovation and impact as a leader in higher education, research and knowledge mobilization. We are a leading research-focused academic institution with a profound sense of community and purpose. At the core of our success is a commitment to research excellence, and the inextricable link that binds teaching and research through a common fundamental thread of curiosity and understanding. Indeed, the Academic Mission highlights the academic heart of our institution as follows:

We regard Queen’s as a university that is both student-centred and research-intensive. Its mission is thus defined by two central activities: learning and discovery. To ensure that these two activities work together learning must proceed in the same way that research progresses: through the guided struggle with a question, a problem, a relationship, or a task.

Queen’s Research Mission:

  • Advance societal knowledge through discovery and discourse that is founded on equity and diversity,
  • Enhance societal values, social mobility and inclusion through scholarship,
  • Translate knowledge into practice and innovation, and
  • Increase global engagement and presence.

The Queen’s environment is a catalyst that challenges and supports, in equal measure, the balance of innovative research with excellence in teaching to provide a dynamic living and learning environment – an environment where exceptional people create an unrivalled community and an unmatched mix of opportunities for discovery, collaboration, and partnership.

Queen’s Research Excellence

The SRP identifies six primary research themes that highlight a spectrum of research and embrace both established and emerging strengths and priorities. Research themes link Queen’s to complex problems that demand creative solutions, to national priorities and to international Grand Challenges. Fundamental understanding and knowledge mobilization create novel solutions for health and wellness, stimulate inclusive, vibrant and sustainable societies, lead to technological inventions, energize economies and advance human rights.

  1. Securing Successful and Just Societies through Scholarship, Governance and Policy
    • Sub-Theme: Equity, Anti-Racism and Inclusion
    • Sub-Theme: Democracy, Justice and Equality
    • Sub-Theme: Global Governance, Public Policy and Economic Analysis
  2. Fundamental Principles of Nature: from Discovery to Application and Innovation
    • Sub-Theme: Understanding the Universe, the Planet and our Place
    • Sub-Theme: Ecology, Biodiversity and the Natural Environment
  3. Mobilizing Creativity and Enabling Cultures
    • Sub-Theme: Creative Production and Expression
    • Sub-Theme: Society, Culture and Human Behaviour
    • Sub-Theme: Resurgent Indigenous Research in Local and Global Contexts
  4. Health, Wellness and the Determinants of Human Health
    • Sub-Theme: Patient-Oriented Research, Transformative Health Care and Health Promotion
    • Sub-Theme: Analytics, Healthcare and Promotion across Populations and Cultures
  5. Sustainability, Environment and Resources
    • Sub-Theme: Alternative Energy Solutions and Energy Policy
    • Sub-Theme: Cleantech
    • Sub-Theme: Protecting the Natural Environment
  6. Interdisciplinary research in materials, computational analytics and human-machine interactions
    • Sub-Theme: Materials Discovery and Molecular Design
    • Sub-Theme: Analytics and Digital Technologies
    • Sub-Theme: Human Machine Interactions, Machine Learning, Software Analytics and Smart Infrastructure