Senate Research Report - January 2021

We encourage the research community to continue to check the Vice-Principal Research (VPR) COVID-19 website for updates. Associate Deans of Research will also provide additional details and guidance on matters particular to your faculty, and they are your first point of contact for questions.  As previously communicated, we have prepared a Continuity of Research Protocol to guide the continuation of certain research activity.  

  Research News  

Queen’s University is third in research income growth (medical category) according to national research rankings released in December by RESEARCH Infosource, a research and development intelligence company whose rankings are highly visible in the R&D sector. Queen’s also leads the category in terms of total corporate income (as a percentage of total research income) and corporate research income growth.  Queen’s also gained ground in terms of research intensity (research income per full-time faculty member), placing fifth.  

The Resources for Research at Queen’s (R4R@Q) series hosted by the Vice-Principal Research portfolio is returning virtually for 2021. The series is intended to help researchers learn more about the many services that can help them throughout the development of their research projects. On topics from project conception to knowledge mobilization and promotion, speakers from across the university will give presentations, take questions, and provide resources on how researchers can leverage their units’ services. More information about R4R@Q can be found on the newly refreshed VPR website

The Undergraduate Student Summer Research Fellowships (USSRF), an annual program sponsored by the Vice-Principal Research portfolio, give undergraduate students a chance to conduct research in the social sciences, humanities, and/or creative arts under the guidance of a Queen’s faculty member. This year, 21 fellowships were awarded to Queen’s students.  At the conclusion of the fellowship, each participant created a short video presentation of their project, and then gathered virtually in small groups with Principal Patrick Deane and VP Research Kimberly Woodhouse to share their video projects and overall experiences with the program. 

  Partnerships and Innovation 

Recently, four Queen’s research teams had the opportunity to take part in a national-level pilot program designed to aid them in bringing their ideas to market. Lab2Market (L2M) was delivered jointly by Dalhousie, Memorial and Ryerson. Eighteen teams from seven universities took part in the program, with each participating team tackling its own unique problem using their research and technology. Each team received programming that led them through the process of how to bring their product to market, getting feedback from customers as well as how to pitch and find financing for their business. 

Fourteen participants have completed the pilot Research Partnerships and Commercialization Workshop. The two-day program covered topics such as market/technology assessments, design thinking, intellectual property, effective communication, and commercialization strategies to support research, research partnerships, and commercialization/startup formation activities.  The program was designed for graduate students (including those in professional programs such as Law or Medicine), post-doctoral fellows, and faculty members conducting research in fields in which knowledge mobilization or commercialization of the research outcome is likely or for those who have a startup idea. QPI saw participants from a variety of disciplines including Chemical Engineering, Neuroscience, Electrical and Computer Engineering, Chemistry, Mining, Medicine, and History. To participate in future workshops visit the Partnerships and Innovation website

  Honours and Accolades 

Five academics at Queen’s have been named Tier 2 Canada Research Chairs (CRCs), a prestigious honour created to promote leading-edge research and attract and retain the world’s best researchers. A five-year position, Tier 2 Chairs are granted to exceptional emerging researchers, acknowledged by their peers as having the potential to lead in their field. 

  • Stéfanie von Hlatky, CRC in Gender, Security, and the Armed Forces (Political Studies, SSHRC funded) 
  • Grace Adeniyi-Ogunyankin, CRC in Youth and African Urban Futures (Geography and Planning, Gender Studies, SSHRC funded) 
  • Laura Thomson, CRC in Integrated Glacier Monitoring Practices (Geography and Planning, NSERC funded) 
  • Susan Bartels, CRC in Humanitarian Health Equity  (Emergency Medicine, CIHR funded) 
  • Jacqueline Monaghan, CRC in Plant Immunology (Biology, NSERC funded) 

Queen’s University Nobel Laureate Arthur McDonald has been honoured by the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada (NSERC) with a national prize in his name.  The Arthur B. McDonald Fellowships will recognize early-stage academic researchers in the natural sciences and engineering and support them to enhance their research capacity, so that they can become global leaders in their field. Worth $250,000 over two years, these awards were previously known as the EWR Steacie Memorial Fellowships and 10 have previously been awarded to Queen’s researchers including John Smol, Troy Day, Ahmed Hassan, and Peter Boag.  

Amber Simpson (DBMS/School of Computing) was awarded the 2020 Mihran and Mary Basmajian Award for Excellence in Health Research by the Faculty of Health Sciences. 

The Pediatric Chairs of Canada (PCC) have named Kirk Leifso of Kingston Health Sciences Centre a recipient of their inaugural COVID Leadership Award. Dr. Leifso is Kingston’s only pediatric infectious disease expert, and is being recognized for his ongoing commitment to patients, colleagues and residents during the COVID-19 pandemic. 

Armand Ruffo (English), Queen’s National Scholar in Indigenous Literature, is this year’s winner of the Latner Writers' Trust Poetry Prize.  The $25,000 prize is awarded to a mid-career poet in recognition of a remarkable body of work, and in anticipation of future contributions to Canadian poetry.  

Graeme Howe (Chemistry), has been recognized by the Province of Ontario with a 2020 Polanyi Prize.  Dr. Howe is one of five recipients of the annual award that recognizes leading researchers who are in the early stages of their careers and/or pursuing post-doctoral research at an Ontario university. 

Jacalyn Duffin, holder of the Hannah Chair of the History of Medicine from 1988 to 2017, was appointed as a Member of the Order of Canada for “her leadership as an academic and mentor in the field of medical history.” 

Alireza Bakhshai (Electrical and Computer Engineering) has been named a Fellow of the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) for his contributions to the development of synchronization techniques for power electronics converters 

Hossam Hassanein (School of Computing) has received the 2020 IEEE IoT, Ad Hoc and Sensor Networks Technical Committee (IoT-AHSN TC) Technical Achievement and Recognition Award for his contributions to technological advancement of the Internet of Things (IoT), ad hoc networks and sensing systems. 

The Vector Faculty Affiliates Program expands the research community’s expertise in the areas of AI, computer science, engineering, and other disciplines related to machine learning, as well as strategic domains of application. Three Queen’s scholars have recently been named as Faculty Affiliates: 

  • Ting Hu, School of Computing 
  • Anna Panchenko, Biomedical and Molecular Sciences 
  • Bhavin Shastri, Physics, Engineering Physics and Astronomy 

Praveen Jain (Electrical and Computer Engineering) has received the 2021 IEEE Medal in Power Engineering, for his contributions to the theory and practice of high-frequency power-conversion systems.